God knows well what we’ll need while walking beside Him in this life.
He wisely formed and fashioned this stunning nurse to care for both me and my family throughout our years of medical ups-and-downs. This one He called to serve never failed to rise above the call of duty time and time again.
Meet my mother, Judy Chase, RN.
Fifty-two years ago, an official of the Copley School of Nursing placed a starched white cap on this lovely, dimpled brunette, and within days, she began her job as a night-shift med-surg nurse. Mom enjoyed her time with the patients, but one in particular caught her eye.
She’d barely met him when he’d arrived on her unit. About a week prior, a fellow nursing student – we kids call her “Aunt” Joan – had asked if she could set my mom up with her cousin in order to spend New Year’s Eve double-dating with Aunt Joan’s boyfriend – we now call him “Uncle” George. Mom insisted on meeting the cousin first, so on Christmas Eve, my dad bravely entered her parent’s stately brick ranch packed with extended family, sizing him up from head-to-toe. He’d brought with him high hopes.
And an injured back.
Nobody knew but he how much pain he would endure when my mother’s brothers, Tom and Jerry, asked him to play Tower of Trouble. It was a game that involved sitting on the floor, then rising to squatting, bending, and standing positions while building a plastic skyscraper.
It proved a Tower of Trouble all right.
Everyone had a great time, but by the end of the game, Dad could hardly stand and took his leave, barely concealing his discomfort. No one present would have guessed that this strapping young buck would find himself in the hospital the following day, writhing in pain and desperate for relief. As he rang his bedside call bell, he wondered how he would ever be able to go out with Mom on New Year’s Eve.
He was already smitten.
Lo and behold, who should bound through his doorway? None other than Nurse Judy.
“Hello, Don,” she said with a shy smile. “I’m your nurse tonight.”
The rest was history. They married the following January, and my mother left her career the following year upon the birth of my sister, Krissie. Her special needs required Mom’s full attention, and without hesitation or complaint, she undertook with gusto the role of motherhood and the special challenges accompanying Prader-Wili Syndrome.
I know she would do it all over again. Gladly.
For the rest of her life, Mom has continued to practice nursing even though she’s never received another paycheck or worn her crisp white cap. This amazing woman has devoted her time and attention to care for all who’ve crossed her path, whether with chicken pox or breast cancer, diabetes or pneumonia, strep throat or torn ligaments.
She’s still “the one” I ask – and she’s good. Only last week, she diagnosed John’s Hand, Foot, and Mouth Disease over the phone!
Thank you, Mom, for being a calming and loving presence in the midst of our storms. Thank you for selflessly pouring yourself out around-the-clock, year after year. Thank you for giving much for the sake of many and for modeling for us all what it means to sacrifice with grace.
You make it look easy. Caring for the hurting is your obvious delight, and I stand forever blessed and grateful.
Grateful to call you Mom.