Spina Bifida Doesn’t Stop Misty Blue Foster in Serving Others

Editor’s Note: The race of life is not a 100-yard sprint. Life is a marathon, a long distance run often over treacherous terrain that requires strength, endurance and single mindedness of purpose. For many, just finishing the course is a major achievement. But others choose to endure the pain and push their bodies and minds to the limits, and therefore win. Such is the case of Misty Blue Foster, who at a very young age set her sights on being a nurse, although physically and financially, she appeared to have no way to reach that goal. Part 3 of a 5-part series.

Foster: When I decided to go back to school to get my two-year degree to become a licensed nurse, I realized I had some big hurdles to overcome. There was an entrance exam that included a math section. Math is not my strong point–although I do pretty well in everything else. Part of the entrance exam included algebra, which I hate. Unfortunately, I didn’t pass my entrance exam due to the dreaded algebra. To solve that problem, I took an algebra review course at the college. I took the entrance exam again, passed it, and got into nursing school!

Misty worked hard to pass her entrance exam and physical so she could get accepted into nursing school.

Misty worked hard to pass her entrance exam and physical so she could get accepted into nursing school.

Another requirement other than the exam was that I had to have a physical. I was concerned that if I had a physical at school, I’d be disqualified. I went to the doctor who had known me most of my life and asked him to give me the physical. He was a urologist who had taken care of me ever since I was a child and knew my condition better than anyone. He told the school, “She has altered urinary and bowel functions. However, she can walk, talk, think, and do everything like the rest of the applicants can. She just may have to go to the bathroom more often than some of your other students.” After the school read the doctor’s report, I qualified for nursing school.

I also faced financial struggles. I tried to get a loan, but I was denied. I researched my options and learned I might qualify for a federal loan through the Sallie Mae student loan program that was affiliated with the nursing school. I got a student loan to help pay for my education and also applied for scholarships. I researched and applied for every scholarship I could find. I was fortunate enough to receive three. I received a $5000 scholarship from the Silicon Valley Children’s Fund, which helps foster children go to college. The money was paid directly to the school and not to me. I looked for uniforms and found a company that offered scholarships for nursing students. I applied and won the scholarship from Tafford Uniform Company for $1000. I also got another $1000 scholarship from the Kidney and Urology Foundation of America.

I believe that people with disabilities can find scholarships and go to college like anyone else. The more scholarships I applied for, the greater the likelihood that I would get one. Of course my scholarships didn’t cover all of my schooling, and I’m still paying off loans. It is totally worth it because I made As and Bs.

Misty made good grades in order to graduate from nursing school and advance in her career.

Misty made good grades in order to graduate from nursing school and advance in her career.

I was so excited to attend nursing school. I went to NCP College of Nursing, which is a private school. Since I was too excited about getting in, I didn’t think to do a lot of research on the program there, which would come back to haunt me later. The hardest part of going to school was having to work full-time at the same time. I worked eight hours a day and went to school about six hours a day, not including clinicals.

During the clinicals, I went to school for eight hours instead of six and studied whenever I could. I still have that same schedule, so I’m very busy. I’m often asked, “Why are you putting in so many hours?” My answer to that question is that I want a four-year degree in nursing. Once I get that degree, I won’t have to work such long hours and I’ll have a better income. I was used to it because I worked full- time since I got out of high school.

Although Misty has a very busy schedule, she loves nursing and serving others.

Although Misty has a very busy schedule, she loves nursing and serving others.

I’ve learned that everyone has some type of disability, and everyone may not be able to do everything that I’ve been able to do. I believe that everyone, regardless of his or her disability, can find some form of meaningful work. I work at a veterans hospital, where young adults with Down Syndrome and other mental incapacities work in the cafeteria. They don’t work full-time, but they have meaningful jobs with an income. Many of the veterans are paralyzed from the waist down or missing arms or legs and still have jobs in the hospital.

You may not be able to work  full-time and support yourself for life, but it is rewarding to have an income and to do something meaningful. Another benefit I have from working and going to nursing school is that I help people every day. I love watching them recover to go live a meaningful life. My title is Licensed Vocational Nurse. In other areas of the country, I’d be called a Licensed Practical Nurse.

Next: Misty Blue Foster Has to Take One Giant Step Backwards to Reach Her Dream


  About the Author: For the last 12 years, John E. Phillips of Vestavia, Alabama, has been a professional blogger for major companies, corporations and tourism associations throughout the nation. During his 24 years as Outdoor Editor for “The Birmingham Post-Herald” newspaper, he published more than 7,000 newspaper columns and sold more than 100,000 of his photos to newspapers, magazines and internet sites. He also hosted a radio show that was syndicated at 27 radio stations; created, wrote and sold a syndicated newspaper column that ran in 38 newspapers for more than a decade; and wrote and sold more than 30 books. Learn more at http://www.nighthawkpublications.com

About UroMed Catheters
Headquartered in Suwanee, GA [a suburb of Atlanta], UroMed is one of the nation’s leading providers of single-use catheters, urological and disposable medical supplies, including intermittent catheters, closed system catheters, condom catheters, pediatric catheters and continence care products. UroMed is nationally accredited for Medicare reimbursement and most state Medicaid plans, and partners with private health insurance providers and health plans to provide patients with single-use catheters, catheter kits and incontinence products. UroMed also has seven staffed regional offices located in Boston, MA; Columbia, SC; Jacksonville, FL; Dallas, TX; Carlsbad, CA; Knoxville, TN; Richmond, VA; and Baton Rouge, LA; enabling next-day delivery after a customer’s initial medical supply order. For more information, please visit http://www.uromed.com or call 1-800-841-1233.

2 Responses to Spina Bifida Doesn’t Stop Misty Blue Foster in Serving Others

  1. Pingback: UroMed Hometown Heroes Feature Misty Blue Foster – Part 3 of 5 | mistybluefoster

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