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Jeanette Andre Varela
Profile Updated:September 12, 2009
Tucson, AZ USA
R. N.; Elementary School Nurse
Krista Danielle born 8-21-90. She just turned 19 and is already a junior in college on a full scholarship More…at Saint Mary's College outside of San Francisco. She's majoring in Education and truly has a gift in teaching others.
Nicholas Mitchell was born 10-01-2004 almost two months early. He was so hyperactive (in utero!) that he detached the placenta and we wound up living in TMC for two months (he had an extra one in the NICU after he was born as well). Nic had a rough start in life but has risen above it all and is now taking life by storm! He's a freshman at UHS (yup, back at good old Rincon HS) and wants to go into acting and become a star one day! He's been in quite a few local productions recently and was certainly born for drama! He's an excellent student and all around good kid. The Universe was extra generous with me in the kid department!
I graduated from the College of Nursing (UofA) in 1983 and moved up to Flagstaff for a couple of years with a friend of mine. I worked in the one and only hospital there and it was so small it had to combine the adult cardiac unit with pediatrics consisting of crying babies waking up all these old people having heart attacks! The irony of that experience on my future nursing career was actually pretty amazing. Read on!
I moved back to Tucson in 1985 and began working nights as a cardiac nurse at El Dorado Hospital. I worked on a stepdown intensive care unit as charge nurse on nights for several years taking care of post open-heart patients and grew to really love the adrenaline rush of working in life and death situations, making critical decisions on a dime and I really did enjoy it for several years.
Then I started to burn out from seeing the same patients being admitted time after time for lifestyle diseases that most were brought on themselves. Of course I was no better than they, however I was years younger then and rathionalized that I would never wind up being as bad as all of them!
Even though I loved cardiac nursing, I knew I wanted to divert my energy towards prevention by educating and counseling people about making positive health choices so they wouldn't wind up like so many of my former patients. Then I and fell into a school nursing job in the Sunnyside District and discovered my passion! I've been an elementary school nurse at three different schools over the last 20 years and feel totally content having found my passion at a relatively young age. It's pretty cool knowing you've had a positive effect on thousands of kids and may have prevented many of them from winding up like my former cardiac patients by making better health choices of their own. :)
I have lots of happy memories from my time served at RHS. :) I was a straight-A student but loved to party with the best of them . . . and they WERE the best!! High school football games, boonie parties, concerts; wherever we were, the fun seemed to follow. I really feel sooo lucky that I/we never had to experience any of the sheer terror that's been going on with gangs since then. For the most part, we were all a bunch of friends (and freaks!) just hanging out together, struggling to figure out this wild journey and having as much fun as we possibly could along the way! And fun we had . . .