Intentional Living

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Building Community Guest Blog Finding Joy

Building Community Through Blogging

What’s the most appealing part about blogging aside from the actual writing? The community! As a member of a unique community on board the Africa Mercy, I think it’s awesome to find community across the oceans revolving around something I enjoy doing. The appeal is in meeting other bloggers and sharing with them, learning from them, and walking the journey together. If I wanted to write without interacting with others, I’d have a journal, not a blog. Although, I’ve got stacks of...

I want to encourage myself and others who are struggling with depression while working abroad. You are not alone.

Depression While Travelling: How Much Have I Missed?

Depression can’t see how amazing my life is I didn’t want to do anything except sit on my couch with the lights dim, the bed covers thrown around, and piles of clothes everywhere. Well, the bed covers and mountains of clothes isn’t that abnormal, but the apathy was. I’ve lost count of how many invitations from friends I’ve denied over the weeks and months. That’s not who I want to be. The problem is it actually IS me. I’m actually depressed....

Nurses left unfulfilled in their job can ask these questions to sort themselves out.

For Nurses Who Crave A Challenge: Part Two

  Need something different? Last week I opened up and revealed what lots of people talk about behind closed doors with friends they trust. It doesn’t have to be a secret. There’s nothing wrong with confessing, “I looked forward to this job, this time, this place, but I just don’t love it. In fact, I don’t know if I can keep doing this.” I’m sure people all over the world anticipate the start of something that’s supposed to be really...

Nurses left unfulfilled in their job can ask these questions to sort themselves out.

For Nurses Craving A Challenge: Part One

Nursing is your calling but you followed it to the Africa Mercy only to meet disappointment. This isn’t everyone, but I’ve heard it enough to know I’m not the only one. “Nursing on the Africa Mercy isn’t challenging enough. I want to use my brain more!” If you’ve never said or felt that, you don’t need to keep reading. I don’t want my experience to taint yours. However, if you don’t feel challenged or fulfilled here, you have company. I’ve been...

Community Life; Lessons Learned In Marriage; Provocative Joy; Rochester, NY

5 Ways Community Life Improved Our Marriage

I did the impossible. I convinced my husband to do something he really didn’t want to do. The Not-So-Newlywed Game was the tense topic of several evenings, but he did it. I know he did it for me and that meant the world! The game turned out to be a lot more fun than we expected. Last week I explained how this game displayed, in a nutshell, why marriage on the Africa Mercy can be so hard. However, it’s equally important to...

bullet journal productivity tool

How and Why I Bullet Journal

A failure of a day That’s how it can feel. The end of the day has arrived but a chunk of tasks that needed to get done got missed. I needed to go to the bank, but now it’s closed. I needed to respond to my supervisor with dates for that meeting by 4pm. I needed to get supplies for a recipe from the grocery store by dusk and it’s 8 PM! Some days are meant for laziness and a...

Marriage is not for the faint of heart; Provocative Joy; lessons learned; mercy ships

5 Reasons Why Marriage Is Not For the Faint of Heart

What is the appeal to sitting in front of all your coworkers and answering pop-quiz questions about your spouse? I had to explain that one to Ruben in order to get him to agree to this Not-So-Newlywed Game. However, when I spell it out, it sounds pretty sadistic actually! As I looked through the crowd at other couples that had wisely not signed up for this Not-So-Newlywed Game, I felt like they were safer facing me than I was facing...

Why Joy Is Provocative

I don’t always appreciate when people tell me, “You’re so optimistic. I wish I could be like you”. It sounds and looks like a compliment, but as someone who pulls on a smile with effort at times, I want to set the record straight. Over the past year I’ve been thinking a lot about who God made me to be. In Texas I learned that focusing on fixing your weaknesses is a waste of time. Too much effort spent improving...

Helpless Wonder: The Result of Being Human

I turned the corner to the second half of the ward while rounding with Dr. Tertius and the team in the morning and was thrilled to see a familiar face from the dockside screening event several weeks ago. However, the thrill was accompanied by a helpless feeling because some patients have a difficult road. I was given the privilege to help with the dockside surgeon screening that happens before the patients are officially chosen and given dates. I was out there from...

The Collision Between a Cruise Ship & a Battleship

Every other Tuesday we have a massive, bright white ship pull up alongside us. This is the day you don’t want to go to the market. You don’t want to take public transport. You don’t want to be mistaken for a passenger on that ship. The Costa neoRomantica is here. They dock next to us bright and early. Passengers pile out and walk toward rows of buses waiting to take them somewhere exciting. They’ve just come from another port in...