It is time, once again, to welcome and rejoice over a new addition to our team! The young and hard-working Micaela has recently joined us as a Pure Freedom educator, and we are eager for you to meet her. Micaela is coming to us from Minnesota, where she was born and raised, as was her husband Cody. The two of them are high school sweethearts who got married in 2019. As a student, Micaela decided to pursue a career in nursing and completed a Bachelor of Science in Nursing at St. Cloud State University. She’s been working as a registered nurse in the hospital setting since then, caring for the sick. In this new chapter of her life in public health and preventive medicine, she is looking forward to being a source of encouragement and inspiration to the students in Northeast Missouri.
When we first met her a few weeks ago, what struck us immediately was her gentle demeanor and how wise beyond her years she seems to be. We all feel extremely grateful to count her among us. Micaela is still in training and thus hasn’t started to teach yet. When asked why she made the decision to work for Lifeline, she said that she sees Lifeline as “a wonderful asset to Northern Missouri.” “Lifeline’s mission is to serve with love and compassion, to be a place for empowering, healing, and instilling hope”, she adds. Micaela is excited and looking forward to making a positive impact in the lives of the students we serve, and especially in the lives of young women. “I would like to be a mentor figure to them, one that I wish I had myself when I was growing up”, she explains. In addition, she is looking forward to the “honest, vulnerable, and important conversations regarding students’ future goals, navigating relationships, understanding their self-worth, and challenging their views of true love.” This description is exactly what the Pure Freedom program strives to accomplish: to not only teach about sex and relationships but to be a place where open, essential, and meaningful conversations happen, right in the classroom!
When talking about her family, Micaela immediately mentioned her faithful husband Cody, whom she calls her “all-time favorite person”. They share the same interests in hockey, skateboarding, and ultimate frisbee. Both her’s and her husband’s families still live in “beautiful Minnesota”. Besides playing sports, Micaela is passionate about photography and gardening. During her free time, you may find her taking pictures of families, high school seniors, newborns, and weddings professionally, as well as taking part in the Garden Club on the ATSU campus.
Micaela is eager to start teaching youth about sexual risk avoidance and healthy relationships, as she sees a real need in today’s culture for a clear and uplifting message to be shared. “My goal as an educator is to inspire and equip the next generation. There are so many mixed messages and pressures on young people today regarding sexuality and relationships. By God’s grace, I hope to be a warm, bright light in an area that is often dark, confusing, and difficult for students to navigate”, she told me. This is a great objective and we believe that she has the potential to be a positive influence in the lives of the students we talk to. Micaela’s favorite Bible verse is Romans 2:4: “Don’t you see how wonderfully kind, tolerant, and patient God is with you? Can’t you see it’s His kindness that leads to repentance?” It reminds her that despite our natural inclination to think that we know what’s best for us, God always knows better. She recognizes God’s kindness and patience in her own life and hopes to express the same qualities when interacting with others.
Written by Elodie Takamiya.