“I grew up in the Orange Grove projects in Mobile. I just wanted to graduate from high school, but I got pregnant at 16. I dropped out of high school after my junior year and got married. We had four daughters. After we got divorced, I didn’t get any child support and didn’t have a high school diploma. My mother helped me get a job in a seafood plant packing seafood and I worked there for nine years. I got my GED and became a CNA and a private sitter.
One day I realized my bills were over my head and my money was under my feet. The spirit of God told me I needed to go to school. The company I worked for paid 100 percent reimbursement, but I had to get the money from somewhere. I enrolled at Bishop State and God blessed me when they accepted a promissory letter for enrollment. I got my nursing degree.
I became the only tech to work in the city of Mobile hospital as a dialysis tech. You were supposed to be an RN for that job, but they couldn’t get anyone. I volunteered and they made me the only full-time dialysis tech. During that, I got my RN degree. My supervisor retired and they gave me the job. I was supervising the nurses I once worked under. God elevates you if you serve him. I am the Inpatient Services Dialysis Program Manager for all of the hospitals in Mobile plus Thomas Hospital and South Baldwin in Baldwin County. That is a pretty good accomplishment for the girls who grew up in the projects with no high school diploma.
At one point I worked four jobs. At another point, I was caring for my mother at home when she was sick. I woke up at 4 a.m. cooked my mom breakfast and put dinner on. My mother passed away while I was in nursing school. That was so hard, but God also put people in my life when I needed them. During nursing school I went to work at my two jobs, they were both in the hospital. When I got off, I went to my classes until 9 or 10 at night. Then I went home and studied. There were nights I stayed up all night. Sometimes my boss could tell I had been up all night and gave me a little time to take a nap. That lasted about a year.
My determination came from four little girls looking at me asking what we were going to eat. A lot of the time it was sandwiches, but they ate.I wanted to give them a better life. We were living in Prichard and people were breaking in every chance they got. After I got my nursing degree and started making better money, the first thing I did was move us to a safer home. I walked around that house and thanked God. It was unbelievable. I never thought I would become a nurse or own my own home. I didn’t have dreams as a child. The dreaming happened as an adult, but they happened. Put God first, anything can happen.
I am a good supervisor because I understand what people are going through. I want to start a ministry that helps single mothers. Prove. 3:5 says Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight. I always acknowledged God and listened and obeyed. You can do anything no matter what environment you came from.
My daughters followed in my footsteps. Two are nurses, one has her masters in business and is in the Army, and my youngest daughter is a laboratory technician. I am so proud of them, I could burst. My oldest granddaughter is going to college in pre-med. I am 61 and dreaming of a peaceful retirement in three and a half years. I want to retire and travel and enjoy my kids and grandkids
My mother grew up in Morton, Mississippi. Her father was a sharecropper. She didn’t go to school past third grade because she had to help in the fields and pick cotton. She could read and write, but since she wasn’t educated, she couldn’t get a good job. However, she loved to fish. She was a master fisherman and we had plenty of fish to eat. My mom had a car and she was the neighborhood taxi service in the projects. She sold fish and drove people around. That is how she made it. I wish she could see how far her legacy has gone in our family.”