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  • Writer's picture Gabrielle Elise Jimenez

Who am I?

I have spent my whole life trying to figure out who I am and what lane I belong in. Most of my life I did and said everything I thought others wanted and expected from me. It was easier. As long as I did it someone else's way, and on their terms, I wouldn't let anyone down. And yet most of my life, I still felt like I was letting someone down... especially myself.

Finding yourself and making peace with who you are and where you are in life can be difficult, and take time. It took me a long time. All my life I listened to the voices of others, allowing them to determine my self-worth, never striving for more because I doubted my ability. I didn't speak up, I didn't say 'no," and I allowed things I never should have. I looked in the mirror and saw who I thought everyone else saw. I had no idea who I was.

Many of you know my story. In my late forties I went to nursing school to be a hospice nurse. I changed my whole life to make that happen, which included moving out of my home, putting all of my belongings in storage, and rented a room so I could afford to go to school. I worked days and went to school at night. I almost failed nursing school twice. The voice in my head stayed on repeat, "you will never amount to anything," but I finally turned the volume down and proved it wrong.

And here I am ten years later and turning sixty, and I think to myself... how did I end up here? Why hospice? Why end-of-life care? Why am I finding myself at the bedside of people who are dying? Where did I find the compassion and heart? Where was all of this empathy hiding? Why now and not earlier on? Who am I? How did I get here?

And I realized that all of it, the bumps, the bruises, the mountain-high obstacles, and the self-doubt I wore like a badge was meant to be. I had to go through all of that in order to find out who I am, where I am supposed to be, and what I am meant to do. I didn't do it alone though, there were a lot of people rooting me on, which surprised me at first, but I soon accepted that if they can believe in me, I can believe in me.

I am finally exactly where I am supposed to be. The pieces all came together. What did I learn? That you have to work hard, and you can't ever give up. Most of all, I learned that your self-worth is not defined by someone else. I learned not to keep listening to the voices. I realized that this was where I was heading the whole time, and it is a perfect fit. I have come home, a place I have been looking for my entire life.

No one gets to determine your self-worth. Age is just a number, do not let it get in your way.

Set goals, work hard, believe in yourself, and accept the hand that is stretched in your direction offering support.

Who am I?

I am me... and I am totally, completely, (and finally) at peace with that.

I am a hospice nurse, and an end-of-life doula and I get to do work that fills me up every single day and I do not take one minute of it for granted. It is an honor to do this work and I realize that every single step along my crazy path led me here... and I am filled with gratitude and not one ounce of regret.

xo Gabby

My first book, "Soft Landing" is the full story of how I came to choosing nursing school and changing my life. In my second book, "The Hospice Heart," I share a few stories of my childhood, indicating I was called to do this at a very early age...

You can find both of these on Amazon, and the links are on my website:

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