After her diploma arrived in the mail, Betty wrote out a schedule: sprints, push ups, sit ups, 1.5 mile run. She had forgotten how hard push ups were and had to train herself on her knees, working those muscles until they were sore and she could hardly type at her day job the next day.
Training had been going for weeks, trying to get her petite frame into an athletic enough shale to pass wasn't good enough; she had tried it already, trying to pass herself off as a much more physically fit individual, but she couldn't pass the time limit on the mile run. No, becoming a police officer and following her life dream (and her father's footsteps) was going to be a lot harder than just the bare minimum. Betty ran sprints until her shins burned and her hips ached, until the cramps in her lungs wouldn't let her go any further. Saturday was spent with a gentle jog at first, to practice, and then timed to see just how long it took for her to run a mile.
She knew that the police department was a boy's club, she knew that going into it. It was an age-old institution with individuals that had a mentality that didn't with the modern age, and that was obvious with the increased scrutiny of behaviors in the media. She knew that the job would be dangerous and stressful and try every inch of her patience and her will power. Betty knew that and didn't care. She was determined as hell. She wanted to be a detective.
It was humiliating, really. Everyone had been so excited for her, wishing her the best of luck and reminding her that she would do so great. Betty had excellent grades in both high school and college, she hadn't even been concerned about that. The physical test was what she was concerned about and what she had been so focused on that when the written portion was in front of her it was like every study guide and flash card had been erased from her memory. There were few times in her life where she had felt so terrible, but failing the written test made Betty feel like a complete failure. That part was supposed to be a cake walk and it doomed her while she ran her best mile and a half to date.
Immediately she knew she had failed. Dejected, she'd gone home to hopeful parents to tell them about her bad news, and more than anything fell into a spiral of being disappointed in herself. She had let herself down. All of that hard work hadn't been enough. "I didn't make it." But her dad, one of Boston's finest, hugged her tight and kissed the top of her head and told her that it was all right. "My partner's one of the most badass gals I've ever met. It took her three tries. Don't give up, just hang in there," he'd told her.
It took Betty three attempts after that first one before she was sworn in, her dad watching with tears in his eyes as she received her badge and promised to protect her community.