by Van Mitchell, OKNT writer
Brandy Steelman, RN Staff Nurse at NP2GO, has been able to turn personal tragedy into a new career/volunteer path, with the help of her faith, family, friends, and her two dogs.
“In 2017 my husband Micah, of 14 years passed away,” she said. “He was a healthy 37-year-old who had a heart attack. I was a nurse, I was right there and worked on him, and he didn’t make it. I had a three-year-old and a six-year-old at the time, and that paused my career working as an ER nurse, because of the PTSD that came with everything that happened. I just couldn’t go back to work.”
Steelman took a year off work, and realized she needed a career change. She enrolled in the University of Central Oklahoma’s RN to BSN program.
The RN to BS in nursing track at the University of Central Oklahoma is available online for registered nurses who are interested in furthering their nursing education. Upon successful completion, nurses will have earned a Bachelor of Science degree. (story continues below)
“When my youngest entered kindergarten I felt it might be the time to go ahead and complete that goal of finishing my bachelor’s degree,” she said. “So, in 2020 I enrolled into the UCO RN to BSN program online. Three months into the program my kid’s school shut down (due to COVID-19 pandemic), and I was now a homeschool teacher finishing my bachelor’s RN at home. But I did it! I think life has taught me that there will always be challenges, change, bumps in the road, but hard work, and perseverance pays off and you can do those hard things.”
In 2021, Steelman, an Edmond resident, started working for NP2GO, a family-owned and operated mobile urgent care specializing in in-home IV fluids, IV Vitamins, and more. NP2GO offers on-demand, in-home assessments, and interventions based on a patient’s status.
“I am so thankful to have found NP2GO, as the flexibility allows me to be both mom and nurse again,” she said. “I am excited to be a part of this team, to build relationships with our clients, and to meet them where they are for their healthcare needs. Working at NP2GO allows me to serve my community where they are by taking nursing to them in their homes or on the job. I love this job! I know as a single mother now, taking time out of my own schedule to care for myself can be a challenge and through this job, I am able to help others do this easier by bringing healthcare to them.”
While completing her Bachelor’s degree, Steelman researched the benefits of therapy dogs in nursing.
“Studies show that dogs can increase serotonin and decrease anxiety in humans,” she said. “While working as an ER nurse I was able to interact with therapy dogs in the hospital and experienced firsthand the connections that they can make during a stressful work day. The desire to pursue therapy dog work became evident while completing my degree and realizing how much having our dogs has helped us in our own story. My children have benefited from therapy dogs helping them work through grief, calming anxiety, building trust, and turning fear into confidence.”
Steelman said her own dogs are certified therapy dogs through Alliance of Therapy Dogs.
“Since completing my bachelor’s degree in 2020, I have found many new and exciting ways to use my nursing career,” she said. “Giving back to the community has been at the forefront of my goals. If it weren’t for a huge support system and the people in my personal community I would not be where I am today. We (she and her dogs) are volunteering at schools and hospitals. It gives me a lot of joy knowing that I am sharing what has helped me with others.”
Steelman started her nursing adventure in high school attending CareerTech where she received her medical assistant certification.
“From there I graduated and went to college where I obtained my LPN and worked in oncology at INTEGRIS,” she said, “In 2006 I completed my associate RN degree. I worked as an ER nurse from that point on.”
Steelman said it has taken a village to help her achieve her goals. “Widowed, single mother, working, and juggling all the activities doesn’t come without its challenges, and learning that balance is a daily adjustment,” she said. “I have found that keeping God as the center priority is what keeps our family grounded, and maintaining that inner circle of support because it truly does take a village, and I am thankful I have a big one.”
Steelman credits her husband for having faith in her to finish her schooling.
“He always wanted me to go back to school,” she said. “He said it was something that I needed to do. He encouraged me. I think my husband would be very proud of how I have not let hard things stop me from pursuing my goals, and from making new goals.”
For more information about NP2GO, click the button below or call (405) 696-7003: