Tag Archives: lifestyle

A Little Dirt On My Boots

Disclaimer; this is not a rip off of the Jon Pardi song, or a full fledged rant on the millennial generation.

I sometimes get negative comments about being a woman pursuing a career in Large Animal Veterinary Medicine. Or the fact that I volunteer at a barn. Why would I want to strain myself, physically, mentally? Don’t I want to settle, have a husband who provides for me, children, family?

Yes and no.

I do one day, pray for all those things for myself, but not until I pursue what the Lord has called me to.

My life often isn’t pretty, but I think there are some who expect it, in the feminine sense to be. There are days when I come home with hay in my messed bun, boots caked in mud, covered in dust, drool, snot, horse hair. From there I change and beautify myself for another full shift waiting tables at the restaurant.

8 hour work days, 12 hour work days, 16 hour workdays.  Sometimes I’ll end up working over 60 hour weeks.  It’s hard, sometimes its gross, and always its exhausting.  But I wouldn’t change a darn thing. We, a generation that missed out on the beauty of working with your hands, getting a little dirty, and a cold shower at the end of the day.

See, in a very humble sense I think that sadly my generation has a sense of entitlement.  I, myself did not come from money. Or handouts. Or having a smartphone in middle school.

But my mama and dad always made sure I had everything I needed and then some.  I genuinely think one of the best gifts they could have given me is the example of working hard, (really really hard).  And I hope that one day, when I do have my own children I can be that example for them.

I am well aware of the ugly and less than glamorous hazards of large animal medicine.  Like sticking your hand up a cows rear (i’m small, so this is really a daunting prospect; hopefully I don’t get lost. Pray for me.), or leaving your house and warm comfy bed at 3 a.m. in the morning, to go to a barn in 10 degrees to check up on a horse with colic symptoms.

But I believe with all my heart, that the effort I put in now, no matter how mindless it may seem is going to reflect positively later.  “What you put in, you get out,” is something my mama always said.

In all my toil, I embrace the season of refinement.  The experience. The horsey lives I see nurtured and the time in the sun (being stuck behind books ALL the time is bad for my vitamin D intake).

I  encourage y’all, especially you millennials and younger to get a little dirt on your boots. Literally, figuratively. Work hard. Give more than you take.  You’ll thank yourself later. With enough hard work, faith and determination I promise you can do anything the Lord has set you too.

Blessings,

L.M.A.

[****P.S. THANK YOU TO MY MAMA AND DAD FOR BEING THE HARDEST WORKING PEOPLE I KNOW, AND GIVING ME CHORES AS A CHILD, EVEN WHEN I THREW A FIT ABOUT THEM. I LOVE YOU****]

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Crash

There’s a difference between settling and finding an inner peace.

I have learned this in a very drastic way, in my last days of being nineteen.

Three days before my twentieth birthday, I experienced something that I thought wouldn’t happen, not to me; always to other people.

I sped down a Virginia state road, going a comfortable 45 miles an hour. Half tired, half unaware. There was some country song on the radio, I was singing under my breath; my roommate Natalie was in the passenger seat, looking up something on her phone.

I didn’t even see the brake lights. They didn’t register in my mind.

It happened in a millisecond. One minute I was coasting at 45 mph, and the next there was smashed in metal, shattered glass, fumes, and my car was rolled in a ditch.

I sat there frozen.  Numb. Shocked.

The airbags didn’t deploy. Natalie’s head shattered the windshield and she passed out for a few minutes.  In that moment I thought I had killed her.

If it was purely up to physics, to logic, to reason, Natalie and I and the other people who I rear ended shouldn’t have all walked away. But we did, with few injuries.

There’s a very famous song, that’s one of my favorites called “Simple Man,” by Lynyrd Skynyrd, in which a wise mother advises her son about the best way to live life, and one line she warns her son to “Remember, there is Someone up above.”

But oh how easy we forget this.  We the complacent. We the fearful.

And for so long I had been settling for things, and became stagnant instead of willing to grow.  For a career that was too comfortable. For a faith that was still, and holding onto heartbreaks and lost friendships that wrenched my gut.

This crash changed things. Call it a reboot on my life or a really swift kick in the butt.

But what it really was, was the Lord with His hand on my life, on all our lives.  A divine wake up call. And it made me realize that every heartache, every closed door (no matter how hard it slams in your face), even every crash has a purpose. To grow us, closer to God, and more at peace with ourselves.  And I am thankful.

God wants the very best for us, not to settle in or to bask in our regrets. Sometimes what is best is not always the most comfortable. Sometimes it hurts. Sometimes it takes a few tries to get it right. Sometimes it wrecks us.

Alas, you can’t grow the garden unless you pull the weeds. Unless you allow yourself to be challenged, to be grown.

Since the accident, I’ve gone through some healing. Physically, spiritually, emotionally. But more importantly, i’ve learned not to settle, but to find the peace of God and within myself. I am well aware that I will experience failure sometimes, and heartache and “crashes,” but I will not settle in them.

I am grateful for my fear, for my failure, for my heartbreaks and for my crashes. Because it shows that God has a plan for my life, for our lives, and that even in our weakness, in our moments where our faith is shaken, He grows us in His strength.

“We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed…” (2 Cor. 4:8-9)

Blessings and peace to you all.

Liana

 

 

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The Bumpy Road to Vet School

I, a city raised Jersey girl, went to school in south of the Mason Dixon line and came back a farm girl.

There was no denying it. A year ago I was more city slicker, without a speck of dirt on my jeans (on the rare occasion I wore jeans),  dressed to the nines, and my version of embracing the outdoors was walking the 10 feet to my car to go to the mall.

And the more I got involved with the life I thought I wanted, a life of comfort, convenience, and high fashion, the more I found it so unfulfilling.

I became bored, and lost passion for my future, and was apathetic about where everything was going. In layman’s terms; I really just didn’t know.

If you told me a year ago, that I, Liana, would develop a weird Jersey-Virginian accent, switch my major of study from Fashion Merchandising to Pre-Veterinary Meds, ditch 16601651_964001390397017_3251287683827782013_ohigh heels for cowboy boots and become a barn hand for an internship, I would’ve laughed and told you you were crazy.

Because in my mind it was never gonna happen.

But, on the other hand, I was discontent with where I was at. Physically, mentally, spiritually.

And I had two choices; to stay stagnant, or to move my butt, and grow where the Good Lord placed me.

I moved.

I’ve always known that life takes some twists and turns and bumps in the road. There are lessons and personal regrets, relationships both made and lost, but also the sovereignty of God’s hand through it all.

And it seems the more I trust Him with this uncomfortable, and sometimes daunting journey I’ve dubbed my “bumpy road to veterinary school,” the more things fall into place.

Like the spark in my little heart had finally been lit, I began chasing fearlessly after the challenge that had been placed in my life; rising up to meet it.  This was more than just a career change for me, it was a lifestyle transition and a day by day refinement.

My days are no longer filled with wondering where I was going, because I know where I am called to be.

Though I am by no means a rocket scientist, and the days working hard sometimes turn into nights, my soul feels like it’s thriving, and striving after something that it’s needed all a long.

Thanks a bunch for following me on this bumpy road to vet school. May it be filled with blessings, adventure, challenges, and good coffee for all.