In Lake Travis, it’s not unusual to meet a resident with a special story to share. I had the pleasure of getting to know Natalie Buchanan at Pure Barre Lakeway. One day after class we started chatting about our careers and she told me about her journey into pediatric medicine.
It’s a story worth sharing.
The road to becoming a CPNP (Certified Pediatric Nurse Provider) is not for the faint of heart. It’s a long journey and since it tends to include heartbreaking circumstances for infants and families, it’s an emotional one too.
Natalie’s passion for medicine started when she was a girl. She wanted to be a doctor, so she was on the pre-med path for her first degree from Texas Tech. While she was pursuing her second degree from UT Health Science Center of San Antonio, she got an externship in the neonatal intensive care unit at Methodist Children’s Hospital and found her true calling — working with preterm and sick infants.
Natalie worked there for a few years helping families through unimaginable situations. Then she found her way to Austin. She worked at St. David’s North Austin NICU for about 6 years.
As she explains, “during my career there, I became very partial to a baby that was born at 24 weeks gestation. He literally fit in my hand. He had a very long stay and I was one of his primary nurses,” she says. “His NICU stay was about 5 months long and in that time I became close friends with his mother and father.”
What happens next seems like something that only happens in the movies. The parents of this tiny baby wanted Natalie to meet someone, a friend of theirs. She agreed to go on a double date and the rest is history.
“Through one of the hardest times in their life, I had met my husband and gained a wonderful family I’m blessed to be able to call wonderful friends.”
Fast forward a few years later and that same baby Natalie had cared for in NICU carried their rings down the aisle at her wedding. As Natalie says, “A literal walking miracle!” His parents were in her wedding as well.
Just recently, Natalie started working at Beansprout Pediatrics with Dr. Danielle Grant, Dr. Brian Temple and their wonderful family of providers. For Natalie — a resident of Lake Travis for the past three years — working at Beansprout Pediatrics is a blessing in itself.
“To be able to help care for the people I know and love is indescribable,” she beams. “I couldn’t be more excited and humbled to be a part of such an amazing practice that the community adores and trusts. It’s so fulfilling,” she adds.
In fact, the Beansprout Pediatrics practice has grown so much they will opening a second location at 2440 E Hwy 290 in Dripping Springs this summer.
Hooray for professionals like Natalie — it takes special professionals like her to keep Lake Travis kiddos healthy and happy.
I asked Natalie how she stays healthy around so many GERMS. She said lots of hand-washing and green juices. What’s your secret to beating cold and flu season?