Skip to main content

Balance Restored

One positive thing to come out of resigning from my job is that I now have time. Time to do all the things that I wanted to do, that I dreamed of doing, the entire time I was working.

When I was working, taking time off was, well, confusing. Sometimes you had to fill out a form, but not all the times. And sometimes you could take time off even if your co-worker was also gone, but other times you couldn't. And sometimes it was okay to take time off to take your kid to physical therapy, but other times you were told to schedule that kind of stuff after hours. Sometimes I could leave at four o'clock to go to my grief counselor, but other times I had to cancel at the last minute because for whatever reason it was now decided I couldn't leave the office closed for half an hour (even though it was a slow day). I was never good at being able to tell which situation warranted which rule. And that made me exhausted. And crabby.

It was akin to tiptoeing up to your alcoholic mother and asking her to please sign a school permission slip; you never knew if she would slobber you with sloppy kisses, slurring about how you were the only light in her life and the strength that allowed her to wake each day, or if she was going to fly into an angry rage, chucking coffee cups against the back wall as she screamed about how you're the single worst mistake she ever made and you ruined her life.

*note: I am only assuming. My mother is not an alcoholic.
However, I did spend a fair portion of my young adult life
 watching way too many Lifetime movies.*

 Anyway, so now I have time. Time to sweep the floor. Time to eat my breakfast without watching the clock. Time to throw a load of laundry in - which I did not, because I read that in order to be a successful stay-at-home person you needed to establish a schedule, so I designated Tuesdays as Laundry Day, and today is not Tuesday, it's Monday, and Monday is Library Day, so I went to the library instead.

I went to the library where my mere existence offended Cheryl, who was obviously no longer thrilled by her employment, as evidenced by the way she sighed through my checkout. And then I offended Cheryl further by daring to ask if she had the books for the Adult Book Club. Apparently, the books are kept on a shelf off to the side of the circulation desk. I had no idea because I've never participated in book club before but I learned this by the exaggerated way Cheryl looked off to the side at said shelf and the exasperated way she explained that no, no the books were not on the shelf where they are kept for book club because if they were there then I would see them. And if she had the books she would have put them on the shelf, but she didn't put them on the shelf because she obviously doesn't have them yet.

Hey, anyone want to join the library book club with me?
It sounds like loads of fun!

I wanted to whisper to Cheryl, let go. Let go now! I wanted to tell her that I get it. I get hating your job, but guess what, Cheryl? You could let go and let someone else cherish that position! I am sure there is someone who gets all excited at the thought of lining books up like square little orphans just waiting for someone pick them up and take them home. I am sure there is someone that would get excited about the fact that a new face wanted to participate in an activity sponsored by the library. And I am sure there is someone who dreams of nothing else but to be the one who assists in the sharing of thoughts and opinions and creative imaginations that each book holds.

Then I thought, but what if Cheryl is that person?

What if Cheryl loves the library more than any place on the planet? What if she takes pride in putting the books back properly on the shelves so each and every one is easy to find? What if she wishes everyone loved to read as much as she does? But what if the logistics of her employment are confusing? What if there are things going on behind the scenes that I cannot see. Things that make her tired and exhausted and suck the joy out of her passion?

Who am I to think I can even begin to understand the why behind our twenty seven second interaction. Who am I to judge?

And so, today, Cheryl, my heart goes out to you. I pray that whatever is crooked be made straight again. That whatever is confusing will be made clear. That the hearts that need to be softened are. That joy is restored and passion is renewed. And that from here on out, you only feel good, really good, when you come to work.

I pray this because I am you, Cheryl. We all are. At times, crabby and tired and misunderstood. Or not bothered to be understood at all. I pray this because, honestly, it's just too easy to walk away. And God didn't put us on this planet to just walk away.

I'll see you when those books come in.

Comments

How liberating! Exhilarating! Your possibilities for non-traditional work are boundless with the talents you possess and the experiences you have had. Write. Write. Read. and then WRITE!!

Popular posts from this blog

The House that God Built

in·stan·ta·ne·ous /ˌinstənˈtānēəs/ adjective 1. occurring or done in an instant or instantly.
synonyms: immediate, instant, on-the-spot







The thing is, she died so sudden.
I didn't have the chance to plead with God, to make all the irrational promises. If he would just let her be okay.... I would start taking better care of my health. I would be nicer to the neighbor that drove me crazy. I would always let someone else go in front of me at Walmart no matter how long the line was. I wouldn't complain. Ever. I would volunteer at the Homeless Shelter. I would clean up after pigs. I would clip the toenails of the elderly. I would do anything and everything He would ask me to do....
There is a box on her death certificate that captures the amount of time between the initial injury and the time of death. It reads "seconds." I wish it read "instantaneous" because she deserves a clever word like that.
Fast forward five years.... definitely taking MUCH longer than "…

Seeing Avery All Grown Up

One day I'll tell you about the freezing cold we left and the heavy bags we lugged, full of supplies and medicines. I'll tell you about arriving in Port au Prince and walking across a cracked concrete parking lot to board an old school bus with a flat tire. How the heat was suffocating after months of below zero Wisconsin winter weather, how the people crowded and walked too close to moving traffic as we searched for a tire shop that was barely more than a couple men sitting on overturned 5-gallon buckets on the side of the road next to a pile of old tires, everything covered in dirt.

I'll tell you about waiting on the bus while they removed the tire and I'll recall the loud explosion that rocked the bus and scared the life out of me and how I was relieved to learn it was just the tire blowing after being filled too far. (They didn't have any gauges.) And then I'll tell you about the fear I felt when I realized we didn't have a tire and we were stuck on th…

When Your Imagined Life is Nothing Like This One

There were so many ways I imagined my adult life would be....THIS is not one of them.
I posted that on my Facebook wall last night. It might have been seen as funny except my choice of hashtags gave me away:
treading water getting nowhere piles of disappointment not many successes worn out and exhausted out of options

I always imagined my life would be thrilling. Full of exciting adventures and people from all over the world. I would dine at Ethiopian, Thai, and Indian restaurants. I would write books, teach English, coach forensics and direct the play. My husband would be charming and funny and not care about gender roles when it came to household chores. He would beg for at least six kids and I would fall in love with him all over again each time I caught him giving good life advice.
I would take photographs and travel the world documenting the people I came across. I would adopt a sibling group of three or maybe four and work on foster care policies because the ones we have aren't work…