Tuesday, December 3, 2019

A memory from some years ago...

As the early part of December unfolds, and this new year is coming in, I would like to share a small story with you. I was involved with a part of a company that was closing down it's Canadian arm of offices and many people were let go. I came to know one lady, just via weekly phone calls and internal emails, whom I was helping transition out of her position, by helping clear out work flows from her group. She had been a loyal employee for 37 years. I still remember the last day she worked, we almost always spoke on a Thursday, around 3pm. We got through business as usual, and then started talking about the last bit of work. It hit me then that this could be the last email we would exchange. She opted to call me to go over some stuff, since she had to leave in 30 minutes.

As we spoke, she told me about how she was the last one in her office. The other cubicles were empty, the parking lot was sparse, and that it was indeed her last day. There was a pang of, I would call it survivor's guilt, because I still had a job, and she was losing hers. But then she told me this, "No, no, it's alright. It really is. I'm 63. I always loved playing piano, at my church, family gatherings, things like that,... but I never had the chance to teach my kids or grandkids how to play it. Because I gave my all to my career. I'm not sad it's over. I'm happy the second part of my career in life is starting. I want to teach them, and others how to play piano. But you know what? If I could do it all over again? I would have chosen to start much sooner."

As I said goodbye and wished her well, I sat back in my chair, and did break into tears. First time I was glad for cubicle walls. Some of sadness, some of joy. Joy because she would be alright, and because she gave me a life lesson that even 6 years later, I still, and will always, carry with me. It is NEVER too late to try to make your own happiness. But the thing is to believe you are worth the time and effort to have it.

Mario, the Artisan Rogue
Illustrator, Voice Actor, Writer, Animal Rights Activist

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