Friday, March 16, 2012

I'm Karen. I'm a Navigator...

I don't talk about my work publicly often.  Well, I take that back.  There was this one time in 2010 when I was on The Nate Berkus Show and I talked about it quite publicly (search for my maiden name, Karen Hawks, on his website and you'll see it's fo' realz).  That wasn't the show topic, though, so it was just a tiny portion.

Some people work.  I have a passion for what I do.  I work at Brenner Children's Hospital in Winston-Salem, NC.  My title is Pediatric Critical Care Navigator.  I work with parents who have children in intensive care or who have been critically injured in a trauma.  That also includes the Intensive Care Nursery.  It was a pilot program through a grant that began in February 2009.  I was the first Navigator and the last of the first standing.  That's right.  I'm the shit.  Nah, I just love what I do.

I also help extended family, foster families, siblings at times; whatever I have to do at that moment.  One of the things I'm best at, which I think won't surprise you, is helping families who are experiencing the death of their child.  It makes some days extremely hard, but for some families, it makes all the difference knowing someone is with them who has walked the walk.  I know having those people saved me when Olivia died.

I worked a split shift with my cohort yesterday, but it was one of the best days I've had in very long time.  I think that's what brought about my cheering about work.  Really, who cheers about work?

I can say that I have a great group of people.  I'm spread among four units:  Peds ICU, Neonatal ICU, both of their Intermediate Units, and the ED when major traumas come in.  I guess that's technically five.  During some of my toughest times over the past year, they have been right beside me.  They're also there during the fun.

So, now you know what a Navigator is.  You've been introduced to Brenner Children's.  You know I had a flash of fame.  My only other dream is to be a published writer.

What else do you want to know that won't classify you as a stalker???

My Craker Dawg!

My pookie and a sweetheart who makes rum cake every Christmas.

We are trouble, with a pool boy.

At my bachelorette party

Two of my besties. The one on the left abandoned me for AK.

She calls me her work bitch. I think that's backwards, Katie.



What we're really like...a mix of them all
*This blog is only my personal view...I am not an official Medical Center spokesperson.*


  1. uuuhhmmmmmmmm...perhaps the recipe for the Christmas Rum Cake??

    Tough job, necessary job, and it looks like a great team. I'm guessing you have one hell of a book inside you.

    1. I have started the book several times. I don't know how to get it anywhere... as for the cake. I can ask!

  2. You do have a tough job, but noone handles it like you can! You are a great person and do a great job at what you do, but you already knew that, right? Love and miss you tons!

    1. Thanks, love. I miss you guys! I hope you're home, or closer to home, soon! xoxox


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