Oh hey – it’s me. Wow. It’s been a minute. Super rusty as I’ve only been writing in my journal.. But ya I’m finishing this draft at oh.. 2ish AM, already running on little sleep, and I’m on a pretty turbulent flight to Costa Rica. Solid time to get this done, right? I’m hyped to be writing again! And even more so on who this post is about/for. My Mom. She’s retiring today so this is dedicated to her. (Sorry Mom. I couldn’t help it, don’t be too embarrassed lol.)
Elizabeth Virginia Hallett (aka the REAL nurse Betty) has been an RN for over 34 years.. Working in ERs across San Diego county, Portland, parts of PA.. Honestly all over. Hell, she’s jumped into action on the freeway a few times. Nursing seems to never stop.. Or at least that’s what I’ve seen being a daughter of one my entire life. If you’re lucky enough to know my Mom.. you know she is the epitome of nursing. She’s a natural healer. Shoot you just feel her touch and it’s instant wellness haha. She has this energy about her..
She doesn’t just heal the sick though- she loves people. Not for any self righteousness bit. . Just genuinely cares for other. I can recall numerous times she would bring in extra close to anyone that needed it, books, toys,etc. give people food from her lunch, take time to really comfort those who were going through a loss..Or giving stickers to kids to make their ER visit less scary. Seeing her in action was something. It’s made such a lasting impact on me. I think honestly, our entire family. We would all go see her during her shift and I always felt SO cool. If we were lucky we were able to hang out with her for a few minutes. We’d snag a popsicle, get a hot chocolate, or meet some of her work crew.. You knew though when it was time to go. She’d put this game face on and her energy was insane. My Dad would say, “alright time to go, Mom’s gotta work.” It was so nonchalant but Mom was going to save lives..
Growing up she did work a lot however she did not miss a beat with her kids current events or school life.. She was the room Mom not just for me but little sister’s and brother’s too. I don’t know how she did this.. Hell there were times she parented solo because my Dad had to go over seas for the Navy. The longest time being 6 months.
Looking back, she has the craziest stories. Which of course are all HIPAA compliant..But with the crazy or funny stories, came the painful ones. The untold stories.. The days where you knew Mom had a day. You wouldn’t ask how her day went, you just knew she needed an extra hug. COVID was a whole other level of hardship.. Not being able to see her for months and knowing she was putting herself on the line was hard. You see, she has an auto immune disease.. I won’t disclose more than that because it’s her business but yeah. That’s her.. Not stepping down to help others..And why she’s just the fucking best.
She has dedicated her career to healing people, to making people feel loved.. Even if it meant she has to give them some stern order to a patient.. Or deny the user their refill of pain killers (which happens a lot).. She legitimately cares so much about people. She taught us kids to do the same and continues to teach those around her. The real beauty of her teachings is that she doesn’t even mean to. You just are simply inspired in the way she treats people. I think that’s why her student nurses seemed so found of her.
It’s crazy. Everyone says they were born to do there career. But she is legitimately meant to be a nurse. Growing up though she would have told you no way. She wanted to be a teacher. One day after seeing how poorly kids treated teacher at school, she decided not to go that route. Her Aunt Kate would later inspire her to be a nurse. I never met Aunt Kate but I am actually named after her. Which comes even more full circle because I wouldn’t have found my parents if it wasn’t for my Mom being a nurse. In 88’ she got a phone call from someone in her ER stating a 15 year old girl was putting her daughter up for adoption and she should come down right away. Groggy after working a 7 PM to 7 AM shift, she said okay then hung up the phone. Called my Dad in DC who apparently thought when she said adopt a kid, it meant another cat lol. Surprise Dad! After my Mom clarified it was an actual human baby, they went for it. My Mom said she was so nervous, she frantically paced around the house trying to decide what to wear. She wanted to make a good impression when meeting my 1 day old self.
After she figured out what to wear, she hurried to the hospital. It was a match. She threw me in her Corvette and it’s been history sever since. (Back then the adoption process was a lot more lax.) So yeah, I owe my life to my Mom and her career in nursing. Crazy right? All of her life’s decisions and events, created so much. I know the decision of retiring is bittersweet for her but I can’t WAIT to see what it brings her..
I love you so damn much. I’m so proud to be daughter. Your story doesn’t end here. It’s just a start of a new chapter. I’ll be here for you while you adjust to the non-12 hour work days.. I promise I’ll still be riding on my skateboard and will seek out advice on the best way to treat injured knees.. And will call you to see how to best treat a burn I got while trying to cook. You know, so you feel like you’ve still got it. Even though we all know you won’t ever lose it. (Still the best IV starter.) But seriously. I hope you can enjoy this new adventure. Don’t stop learning and growing, just like you done in your career. See all you want. Eat and drink everything. Keep living. Sleep in. Read every single book. You deserve this and so much more.
Now if you made it to the end of this (thank you) and go call your Mom or whatever maternal figure you have in life.