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Retired nurses reminisce and reconnect

Some retired last year, and others retired more than 20 years ago. They come from all different departments: oncology, med-surg, emergency, hospice, and many more. Some live in Jackson, and others live farther away now. The one thing they have in common is that they are all nurses. 

“We started contacting people that we could remember, invites, and decided that we want to make once a month decided on a day of the month that would be convenient for everybody. And so it’s the third Tuesday of the month, at a restaurant here in Jackson, that would be convenient for everybody,” Carol Clement said. She and Diane Butler are two of the people who founded the retired nurses group that has met every month since October of 2022. 

The group has grown from just a couple of people, to 68 members who come to meetings when able. And it’s a party: the women talk about everything from retired life, to reminiscing about the days of working for the former Regional Hospital or Jackson General Hospital. 

“Until you’re there in that bed and going through something, you cannot understand what they’re going through. And you have to be very compassionate about how you listen, and how you react,” Clement said about her career. 

Other conversations were much lighter. One nurse knew exactly when the doctor was in the building, just from the puff of cigarette smoke that followed him through the halls. Another described the time she yelled at a doctor because he was about to wake her sleeping patient. Many described their life-long friendships they gained with their coworkers, many of them present. 

“But then you get to hear all the fun stuff that happened to us while we were working, and there were always some fun things that happened. It wasn’t always serious,” Clement said.

But one thing the group can agree on: while being a nurse is good, being retired is much better. 

Julia Ewoldt, julia@jacksonpost.news

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