Thursday, June 25, 2009

A View of a Difficult Day

Nothing helps ease the pain of grief like the joy of laughter.
"Speed Bump" by Michigan's own Dave Coverly is a great comic strip. Read, laugh, and share.

Today was a very difficult day.

It was one of the first things my boss said to me this morning. She's still coming to terms with the loss of her mother who died about two weeks ago. Her mother was an amazing woman - smart, funny, strong, and full of love. My boss is very much like her mother, and it's been hard to watch her cope with her loss. Today was especially difficult because she did something I've only seen or heard her do once before.

She began to cry. It was out of nowhere. She called this morning to check in and, as she ran through her schedule for the day, she noted that she had to go to the dentist for a routine cleaning. The appointment was always set up so that her mother would go at the same time for her cleaning. This was her first appointment alone in many years, and having to cancel her mother's appointment brought her to tears.

The difficult part was not the fact that she was crying, but that it felt like there was nothing I could do to help. She apologized to me for the tears, which almost made me cry. It felt as though I should be the one offering the apology for only being able to say, "Don't apologize, just let it out." It felt like more should be done. What, I don't know. I gave her a moment to pull herself together, to let the tears flow. She quickly pulled herself together, and we talked for a few more minutes about the day ahead, about her mom, and about moving forward.

The day didn't get much easier. It was an unspeakably hot day and no one could get comfortable in the office. Some were too hot, others were too cold - there was no middle ground. A training session to go over a new piece of office equipment got delayed because of a configuration issue. I was behind because my day started with my cable going out, which led to a much too long call to a customer service rep walking me through steps I'd done at least three times before calling before she finally announced that I needed a service call - what I asked for in the first place. I went out at lunch to buy some salad dressing for the salad I remembered to bring for lunch, only to discover that I'd left my bank card on my desk.

The day became even more difficult when I learned that Farrah Fawcett had died. When I was a kid, I dreamed of being Jill Munroe - complete with the flowing hair, flirty charm, and cool Mustang Cobra. Years later, it was a treat to discover she had true acting talent in work like "Extremities" and "The Burning Bed." I came to admire Farrah during her battle with cancer - she was kick ass enough to help catch health care workers leaking her medical information. Reading about her passing felt like a part of my childhood had gone. She was only 62 - much too young to be gone so soon.

Then I got home, turned on the TV and (before the cable went out - again) heard that Michael Jackson was in a coma. Then I heard that the hospital he was in was being closed off and crowds were gathering. Then I heard my mom through the ceiling.

"OH NO! NO, NO, NO!"

That's when I knew he was gone. Such a troubled life. Such sparkling talent. Such a sad, tragic death. I could tell by the sound of my mother's voice that she was about to cry. When she came to my front door ready for me to take her to work, the first thing out of her mouth was an apology.

"I'm sorry," she said. "I don't know why I'm crying." Then, after a second, I made a joke to help her pull herself together, and we went back to the routine of the day. On the ride to work, we listened to the radio for news about Michael's passing and talked about Farrah's death. I thought about my boss, who's in the midst of settling her mother's last affairs. I thought about the people left behind - how they must be feeling, the hurt they must feel, the love that my boss's mother, that Farrah, that Michael gave to everyone they touched.

And I tried not to cry. More later, but not before saying rest in peace.

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Blogger The Old Man said...

Tough day all around. It was certainly a bad month for Celebs, and as much for me. When you have to put up with your second mortgage lender pounding on the door, forcing his was in... yeah, it's tough there, too.

Life truly sucks, but so does death.

I'm not a fan of any of the recent celebs who've died, but I don't watch much TV, and I can't hear so I don't listen to music.

I gather that Rowe wants the kids now, Jackson wanted custody to his mother, Diana Ross back-up guardian. A confusing will, confusing life. And more debt than I.

When life knocks you down, it's best to STAY DOWN. That way, you can't be knocked down again.

9:49 PM  

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