By Kathy Walsh

DENVER (CBS4) – This football season there will be a nurse on the sidelines at Denver Broncos home games. She won’t be practicing her profession, but rather, her passion.

It took three attempts for the young woman to realize her dream. Now, she’ll be dancing for joy with the Broncos cheerleaders.

Gabby Windey (credit: CBS)

Gabby Windey (credit: CBS)

Gabby Windey is a registered nurse. She focuses on the sickest patients, those in intensive care at the University of Colorado Hospital.

PHOTO GALLERIES: Broncos Cheerleaders Tryouts Finals | Broncos Cheerleaders Tryouts

“It takes it to a kind of level in compassion and empathy and skill that I connect with,” Windey told CBS4 Health Specialist Kathy Walsh.

Gabby Windey (credit: Denver Broncos)

Gabby Windey (credit: Denver Broncos)

Gabby Windey (credit: Denver Broncos)

Gabby Windey (credit: Denver Broncos)

Windey has worked in ICU for three years. It can be stressful, but she has her own way of coping.

“With dance. It’s huge. That really helps get my mind off of everything,” Windey said.

Nursing is her profession, but dancing is Windey’s passion.

On the right: Gabby Windey (credit: CBS)

On the right: Gabby Windey (credit: CBS)

“When I’m dancing, nothing else matters,” she said.

She started dancing at age 12 and hasn’t stopped. Windey danced through high school and college. Last year, she was on the dance squad for the Denver Outlaws lacrosse team.

PHOTO GALLERY: Denver Broncos Cheerleaders Tryouts

This year, she’s had a dream come true. On her third try, she made the Denver Broncos cheerleaders.

(credit: Gabby Windey)

(credit: Gabby Windey) (credit: Gabby Windey)

“They hold their girls to a really high standard and they also give back in the community, which is huge,” Windey said.

A patient’s bedside and a pro football sideline are very different worlds. But for Windey, they work.

She said she’ll be nervous when she performs at her first Broncos game as a cheerleader. At the hospital, Windey leans on her coworkers for support. She says she’ll do the same at Broncos games with two dozen dancers by her side.

Kathy Walsh is CBS4’s Weekend Anchor and Health Specialist. She has been with CBS4 for more than 30 years. She is always open to story ideas. Follow Kathy on Twitter @WalshCBS4.

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