My wife is closing out her 30+ year nursing career

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Mar 3, 2011
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California's Central Coast Wine Country
Hello:

I met my wife in 1974 when we were in college and she was working on getting her nursing degree. Her long and successful RN career comes to an end this July 18th.

Sue started in NICU, the unit where they provide intensive care for dangerously premature babies or newborns with life threatening conditions. Some newborns were so health compromised they remained in the unit for months.

I used to meet Sue for lunch at the hospital. One time she was still attending to some business when I got there. I was looking inside this sealed off glass room where she was in. I remember her picking up this premature baby and showing it to me through the glass. The baby was so tiny it fit into the palms of her hands!

I especially remember one of Sue's patients, an extremely premature boy named Jake. Early '80s. Sue cared for him for a year! I'll always remember Sue telling me how day by day he was getting healthier and stronger and that he would be discharged soon, and how he would smile and kick his legs with joy when he saw her at the beginning of her shift. The two of them had gotten very close. I remember the phone ringing one night at 2AM. These kinds of calls are never good. Completely unexpectedly Jake had died! I vividly remember Sue breaking down and sobbing uncontrollably in her pillow, absolutely devastated with the news.

In 1981 Sue took care of two premature twins. They were in NICU for months. Fast forward about 20 years and Sue was working in Labor and Delivery. A young mother had just delivered premature twins. The last name sounded familiar so Sue mentioned she took care of premature twins with the same last name in 1981. The new mother was one of those twins. Yeah really! This was huge news, even in the San Francisco Bay Area metropolis of 8 million people. It was in both the San Jose Mercury newspaper and the ABC television news. What an amazing memory, eh? As an aside, people wrote Letters to the Editor (this was pre-internet as we know it). I still remember one writer making a comment that based on my wife's looks she must have been something 10 years old when she cared for the first set of twins. Too funny!

And finally, as Sue approached her final career years, she was on the team who delivered our granddaughter.

We will be married 45 years this August 6th. I am so proud of her. She is the best wife ever!

Scott

A young Sue, brand new to nursing, doing a "modeling gig" for the hospital brochure. Photo circa 1976 or 1977.
IMG_0864.jpeg


The twins story. Pictures from the San Jose Mercury News and KGO news.
IMG_0385.JPG
IMG_0170 2.JPG


Sue and our granddaughter.
IMG_1894 2.jpg
 
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Joined
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Hello:

I met my wife in 1974 when we were in college and she was working on getting her nursing degree. Her long and successful RN career comes to an end this July 18th.

Sue started in NICU, the unit where they provide intensive care for dangerously premature babies or newborns with life threatening conditions. Some newborns were so health compromised they remained in the unit for months.

I used to meet Sue for lunch at the hospital. One time she was still attending to some business when I got there. I was looking inside this sealed off glass room where she was in. I remember her picking up this premature baby and showing it to me through the glass. The baby was so tiny it fit into the palms of her hands!

I especially remember one of Sue's patients, an extremely premature boy named Jake. Early '80s. Sue cared for him for a year! I'll always remember Sue telling me how day by day he was getting healthier and stronger and that he would be discharged soon, and how he would smile and kick his legs with joy when he saw her at the beginning of her shift. The two of them had gotten very close. I remember the phone ringing one night at 2AM. These kinds of calls are never good. Completely unexpectedly Jake had died! I vividly remember Sue breaking down and sobbing uncontrollably in her pillow, absolutely devastated with the news.

In 1981 Sue took care of two premature twins. They were in NICU for months. Fast forward about 20 years and Sue was working in Labor and Delivery. A young mother had just delivered premature twins. The last name sounded familiar so Sue mentioned she took care of premature twins with the same last name in 1981. The new mother was one of those twins. Yeah really! This was huge news, even in the San Francisco Bay Area metropolis of 8 million people. It was in both the San Jose Mercury newspaper and the ABC television news. What an amazing memory, eh? As an aside, people wrote Letters to the Editor (this was pre-internet as we know it). I still remember one writer making a comment that based on my wife's looks she must have been something 10 years old when she cared for the first set of twins. Too funny!

And finally, as Sue approached her final career years, she was on the team who delivered our granddaughter.

We will be married 45 years this August 6th. I am so proud of her. She is the best wife ever!

Scott

A young Sue, brand new to nursing, doing a "modeling gig" for the hospital brochure. Photo circa 1976 or 1977.
View attachment 105218

The twins story. Pictures from the San Jose Mercury News and KGO news.
View attachment 105221 View attachment 105238

Sue and our granddaughter.
View attachment 105228
What a beautiful story, and Sue is very pretty .....................enjoy your alls retirement.
 
Joined
Jun 3, 2002
Messages
8,796
Location
MI
Thanks for sharing. Both of my daughters are career nurses and it has been brutal the past few years. My oldest daughter is especially passionate about her career, shares heartwarming stories often, and recently won the DAISY Award. I'm proud of them both.

I, too, am inspired by your story. Thank you and best wishes for a great retirement.
 
Joined
Aug 14, 2015
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Location
CA, USA
Congrats on her decades of service, and on a well-deserved retirement. Both of my daughters spent some days in the NICU (one was a month premature) before going home--both are very healthy and are fine--but I sure value the care given to the mothers and newborns there, that's for sure.


Hello:

I met my wife in 1974 when we were in college and she was working on getting her nursing degree. Her long and successful RN career comes to an end this July 18th.

Sue started in NICU, the unit where they provide intensive care for dangerously premature babies or newborns with life threatening conditions. Some newborns were so health compromised they remained in the unit for months.

I used to meet Sue for lunch at the hospital. One time she was still attending to some business when I got there. I was looking inside this sealed off glass room where she was in. I remember her picking up this premature baby and showing it to me through the glass. The baby was so tiny it fit into the palms of her hands!

I especially remember one of Sue's patients, an extremely premature boy named Jake. Early '80s. Sue cared for him for a year! I'll always remember Sue telling me how day by day he was getting healthier and stronger and that he would be discharged soon, and how he would smile and kick his legs with joy when he saw her at the beginning of her shift. The two of them had gotten very close. I remember the phone ringing one night at 2AM. These kinds of calls are never good. Completely unexpectedly Jake had died! I vividly remember Sue breaking down and sobbing uncontrollably in her pillow, absolutely devastated with the news.

In 1981 Sue took care of two premature twins. They were in NICU for months. Fast forward about 20 years and Sue was working in Labor and Delivery. A young mother had just delivered premature twins. The last name sounded familiar so Sue mentioned she took care of premature twins with the same last name in 1981. The new mother was one of those twins. Yeah really! This was huge news, even in the San Francisco Bay Area metropolis of 8 million people. It was in both the San Jose Mercury newspaper and the ABC television news. What an amazing memory, eh? As an aside, people wrote Letters to the Editor (this was pre-internet as we know it). I still remember one writer making a comment that based on my wife's looks she must have been something 10 years old when she cared for the first set of twins. Too funny!

And finally, as Sue approached her final career years, she was on the team who delivered our granddaughter.

We will be married 45 years this August 6th. I am so proud of her. She is the best wife ever!

Scott

A young Sue, brand new to nursing, doing a "modeling gig" for the hospital brochure. Photo circa 1976 or 1977.


The twins story. Pictures from the San Jose Mercury News and KGO news.


Sue and our granddaughter.
 
Joined
May 30, 2010
Messages
14,967
Location
North Carolina
Congratulations, it's great to see someone love their career. No doubt she will be missed.

As I like to say, her position will be filled but she will never be replaced.

Well done good and faithful servant!
 
Joined
Jan 9, 2010
Messages
11,513
Location
Los Gatos, CA
Well done Sue! An incredible career of service to thousands of patients.
Burses do the bulk of the work in hospitals, on their feet for untold hours dealing with ultra sressful situations.

A life's career well lived!
 
Joined
Jul 26, 2020
Messages
2,406
Location
FL
Great story and photos. Nursing is very difficult, especially NICU. 😷

When I was a Biomed Tech repairing medical equipment, I made extra sure I triple checked all my work before returning equipment to service in L&D and NICU.

Nurses are the backbone of any hospital.
 
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slo town

Thread starter
Joined
Mar 3, 2011
Messages
2,400
Location
California's Central Coast Wine Country
Thanks for sharing. Both of my daughters are career nurses and it has been brutal the past few years. My oldest daughter is especially passionate about her career, shares heartwarming stories often, and recently won the DAISY Award. I'm proud of them both.

I, too, am inspired by your story. Thank you and best wishes for a great retirement.
I'm glad you're proud! Sometimes I pick up Sue after work on PMs (swing shift). I see all these nurses leaving work. Every single one of them are intelligent, driven, caring, and wise.

What makes me most proud is that these women have sacrificed to position themselves into a livelihood where they can be financially self sufficient. That is my definition of female empowerment.

In the big cities experienced RNs can earn $150K per year or more, and that's usually for a 32 or 36 hour work week (4x8 or 3x12). But, it's stressful both mentally and physically. Today's nurses are on a treadmill that's running even faster than when Sue first started out. It takes years to get Christmas or New Year's off. It's impossible to get both off, even if they've been there 30 years. Don't like working nights (graveyard)? Too bad. Do you have big plans for when you get off work - but others from the next shift have called in sick? You're not getting out of there and you're getting "mandated", and you'll probably work a full double.

Scott
 
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