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Bravo's Top Chef host Padma Lakshmi is taking the time to recognize those who are on the frontline of defense against the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Specifically, she is thanking all nurses for their courageous efforts — and recognizing one nurse who has made a profound impact on her life over the years.
"My mom is a registered nurse who came to this country in the 1970s," Padma shared on Instagram. "America had a shortage of qualified health professionals at that time and she wanted a new life for us here. So both parties got something out of the bargain. Many nurses to this day are immigrants from all over the world."
She then shared her experience as the daughter of a nurse: "Growing up with a mom who is a nurse had its ups and downs. I had to be delirious with fever or vomiting blood for her to let me stay home from school. I had to share her with cancer patients in the 70s, AIDS patients in the 80s, and mental health patients after that. But when I did get seriously ill, she was right there 24/7 and knew exactly what to do better than anyone else in the hospital. She has dedicated herself to the care and well-being of others for almost 50 years. In a way, nurses are very much like good moms are supposed to be. They care for you, check on you, comfort you, and clean you up even when you are unkind and ungrateful in return," she wrote.
Padma then recognized all the nurses out there who are caring for patients amid the coronavirus outbreak.
"Today as our world is being devastated by this virus, I want to salute my mother (now retired) and all the nurses who selflessly put their health and sanity on the line for the well-being of others daily," she wrote. "Dear Nurses-We see you, we feel for you and most of all we want you to know that our gratitude is too big to put into words. Oh, and thanks Amma. Your patients were lucky to have you."
Read the full tribute, below.
Padma has previously opened up about the early years of her life when her mother left her to live in India with her grandparents so she could go to the U.S. to flee "an abusive marriage," find a job, and locate "a safe place for us to land."
"When I finally came to the United States at 4 years old, I remember catching my first glimpse of my mother at JFK airport, so pretty and carrying an afghan she had knitted for me — and thinking the world was whole again," Padma wrote.
Want more Top Chef? New episodes air every Thursday at 10/9c or catch up on this season through the Bravo app.
For the latest, most accurate information on coronavirus, go to the World Health Organization (WHO) website.
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