At 54, Officer Wendy Caldwell has joined the Houston Police Department as the agency's oldest rookie.

ABC News reports that Caldwell had been with the department in the early 1990s, but left the job to take care of her two small children as a full-time stay-at-home mom.

"It was an extremely hard decision for me. I wanted to do both, but I realized that my children were more important," Caldwell told the news station. "That time that I got to spend with them was absolutely golden for me. I'll never be able to replace that, so that's something, those memories that I have with my kids, I'll have forever."

But in 2015 to 2016 her marriage of almost 20 years began to fail, and she needed to find a way to support herself financially. So she returned to the job she loved as a young woman.

Caldwell graduated number 17 out of 67 in her class and joined the Central Patrol Division for her permanent assignment.