Nearly 8 years ago, I embarked on a career in insurance. Full of nerves and trepidation, I walked through the door with little confidence and a commitment to keep to myself. A commitment that I kept for nearly a year. I have known the evils of having "friends" at work. That would not be my downfall here.
Right away, both of my husband's grandmothers died. The company was gracious enough to give me extensive bereavement leave for both even though when I started the job in October they had already granted me permission to take a vacation in January since we had planned a fantastic cruise. A month after I returned, after a year of fertility treatments, I became pregnant with my eldest daughter. It was a pregnancy that while called high risk was more like high annoyance. I spent 3 days a week in fetal monitoring and the company worked with me.
Through this time, the cube in front of me sat empty.
Until ONE DAY.
I came in and there was my favorite manager (sarcastically, she says favorite), Wire-haired Willie, as I lovingly referred to her, with a new hire who was well-dressed, but appeared a little reserved. I continued to keep to myself. I reluctantly agreed that he could ask me questions about the job. I think he preferred to ask me because I was close and the employee who volunteered herself was a little cuckoo. He introduced himself as Scott.
As it turns out, Scott was actually very friendly. He already seemed to know EVERYONE in the office and he would laugh at me and say, "You've been here longer than I have." Which was true, but I made a commitment.
My pregnancy was rough, as I am diabetic. Scott was a trooper at worker. He would wake me up when I was sleeping, make sure that I was alive, and together...we were catty...in a super fun way! I began going to lunch with him, sharing my thoughts (as crazy as they are), and to make no bones about it...we were friends. In a lot of ways, he was my non-threatening work husband.
I had Autumn. My sister was supposed to send a picture of her to work via email. I gave her a list of addresses and told her to pick out a cute one. The next morning, bright and early...I received a call from Scott to let me know that she had sent the entire shoot. Me...in hospital gown...300lbs...rolled in a ball...getting an epidural...full on butt crack shots, doctors digging in my abdomen shots...but very few shots of actual baby. I believe his actual words were "I think I have just seen more of you than I should have."
I have continued on here for nearly 7 more years and thanks to Scott and forcing me to leave my cubicle I have met many people that have enhanced my life. (Some that have enraged me, but mostly all positive) I am forever grateful for his kindness to me, his encouragement, and most of all, his friendship. He helped me see many things about myself that I was blinded to, like my perfunctory "do for everyone else and think of myself last". Most of all, that I am worthy of having good things in my life and while I am still in the beginning stages of this, I can never repay it's value. And you made me laugh, you jack-ass...so many different ways. I am happiest when I have a connection to humor and you have been that connection for me. Without it in my life on a regular basis...there will be a hole...and I promise not to fill it with food.
Since, you won't allow me to say it to you, I will say it here. You are right Scott, we ARE friends. It is an active, not a passive verb. In a lot of ways you are like family to me. I may not see you everyday, but there is a lot of love for you that I carry with me. I will miss you like the "dickens" (lol) and I will miss Autumn asking me if Mr. Scott said anything funny today. ( I have more to say to others, but Scott will not allow me to say anything to him
The company that has brought me to some of the most important people in my life (outside of my family) will put me out on my ass tomorrow. It's scary and it's heartbreaking, but I have to say thank you just the same.