The University of Tampa. Set in the heart of Tampa, Florida. This beautiful university is where I gained all my nursing knowledge. In addition to how important that was, I also was lucky enough to meet my life long best friend, Julia. I cannot explain how we managed to make it through all 2 1/2 years of what we then called torture, but we did it. And we did it together. I am 100% sure that I would have not made it through if it wasn’t for her. I am thankful for her-but I’ll save that for another Thankful Day this month. She deserves her very own post. But today, I am thankful for my school. I honestly loved it there. Even though I struggled sometimes to make peace with a few people here and there and some of the instructors were judgmental and biased-there were plenty that were amazing, knowledgeable and kind. In fact, there were quite a few role models. I felt so proud to be there. I felt so proud to be studying nursing there. It wasn’t until I started working at Methodist in Houston that I realized how much I have really learned from UT (above all the other new grads just starting off with me). I have a lot of experience and I have seen a lot. I have UT to thank for that knowledge. I really honestly feel like they prepared me.
I’d lie if I said I didn’t miss it. Because I do. I miss it. Everyday. I miss the sunshine. The palm trees. The warm breeze. The beautiful campus. The warmth in the air every morning. The smell. The perfect weather where it was an impeccable medium of warm and cold. I miss the ocean. The sunsets. The people. Oh, the people. They were so nice. So inviting. So…not Houston. I miss coffee in the morning on my patio. Viewing the ocean from my doorstep. The pool that was literally in the ocean outside my sliding glass door. I miss my busy life, busy schedule and go go go lifestyle. Houston has nothing on Florida. Not one bit. But like any journey, you make it work and you do what you can to make yourself happy. I appreciate every bit of experience I gained from Tampa. And I can honestly say that it was the city I learned independence, intense strength (to be away from my husband and away from my family) and where I learned how to appreciate the small things. It’s the city where Bobby asked me to be his wife. It’s where we both grew immensely as adults and where our relationship got stronger.
But Houston is where my life is now. It’s were we are starting our family and our careers. But with Florida–I’d go back in a heartbeat. And I’d recommend Tampa as a place to live to just about anyone. I can’t explain the emptiness it left in my heart when I left in May-but one day, we will be back. Hopefully sooner rather than later. But this time we’ll have a little Sock with us.