Wednesday, August 4, 2010


her and her husband had been arguing.  "little things", "stupid things" she told me.  i understand bits of what she tells me due to her heavy russian accent.  "something's wrong with him, i'm taking him to the hospital, i don't know what it is but my husband is not my husband".  that's what she told me right before i went on vacation.  when i returned back to work, she was sitting shiva.  her husband of 33 years committed suicide.

her cubby is diagonal from mine and i look over my right shoulder periodically just to make sure she's "here".  today she's not.  she tells me "i thought i was going to get better but i'm only getting worse".  i worry about her but i have yet to find words to console her.  it pains me that all i have offered her is a hug or a warm hand on her arm.

when i came back to work, silly me, i kept giving her the sad face... the i-know-you're-going-through-and-so-i'm-going-to-show-you-my-miserable face.  i didn't realize why she kept avoiding me until i saw another co-worker giving her the same face. i quickly corrected myself.

when she returned to work, i knew that she wanted to get back to normal.  she wanted to be around her friends, her co-workers and her work to prevent her from thinking about her grief... but her managers gave her even more grief by telling her that her performance was off, she was here but not here, not realizing that she needed time to cope.  they took 15 minutes away from her annual time because she left work at 9:45 on the morning her husband died.  some folks are incredibly insensitive... and that's putting it lightly.

however, she has a strong support system.  plenty of children, grandchildren and her close friends.  one of our co-workers, who is a good friend of hers, bought her a cat.  she named the cat after her husband's nickname.

it is my hope that she becomes stronger daily... that she and her entire family find peace.  at some point in our lives we've all sat on the front pew of a church or funeral home... some of us have sat shiva... all of us have mourned... and i pray that my fellow co-workers, her supervisors, find compassion and offer it to her...


GC {God's Child} said...

good point about the sad face.
Hard not to mentally categorize someone as a person not to be smiled with when you know they are going through it.

Mizrepresent said...

So very sad, but just keeping being a good friend, a concerned and loving co-worker. That's what she needs most of all, even with fam, they are there during those work hours when her face turns down and her eyes water, and her memory flows back to when, but you are. I have seen this look in my mom...she can seem so well at times and then i can see when she is just drifting away and i try to remind her that she is indeed in the living, make her laugh, make her smile an appreciate life. Good post!

MsKnowitAll said...

GC... i don't smile nor sad face anymore, thank goodness. but she's communicating so that's a good thing - i can console her easier that way.

Miz... thank you for the advice. i will put it to use! i pray your mom stays encouraged. she is blessed to have you.