Love is love. Work is work.
We hear these phrases often in different contexts. I’d also venture to throw out the sage advice that love is work. But that is not what I want to talk about today. I want to talk about love at work. Not the salacious forbidden kind of office romance you’re already thinking about. You’re terrrible! I’m not even referring to the proverbial work husband; the guy you sit next to whom you banter with, who says bless you when you sneeze, compliments you on the new hair cut (heck, the only guy who notices said haircut). Despite having ample men to choose from in my male dominated industry, and despite the bad reputation of women in my career as being catty types, my love at work is actually a female. My work wife. And she’s leaving me.
We’ve been together for 15 tumultuous years. Thrown together haphazardlybat first, simply because I was a young female trader and she was a young female client. We were nobodies, but we were nobodies in the same boat.
It wasn’t her choice. I was the first person she told. She couldn’t move to another state. It’s complicated. She is losing her job, but she feels freed. I am losing her, and I feel trapped.
In 15 years how many times did we meet? Ten? Less? How many hours did we spend live on the phone? Admittedly few. IM was our love language and it went deep. And there will be a giant hole on my desktop, and in my workday, and in my heart, where she once was.
- She knows all about my crazy family (and she is always on my side).
- She knows what makes me tick, and she keeps me in check when I’m in the wrong.
- She shares in my joy and my guilt and my worries when it comes to my children.
- She diagnoses my hypochondriac symptoms. (btw Sues, what’s with this eye twitch I’m experiencing lately?!)
- She picked out my kids birthday invites and party favors year after year after year.
- She is the Queen of bargain hunting, and trend setting, and my personal shopper.
- She styles our annual family photo wardrobes.
- She opened my eyes to the world of Etsy, Pinterest, and Aliexpress for frick’s sake. Life. Changed.
We’ve gotten married, gotten divorced, and gotten married again.
We’ve been mad at our husbands, and learned to apologize when necessary.
We’ve dealt with dead beat parents, disappointing parents, meddling in-laws, overbearing exes.
We’ve raised 5 kids, 2 stepchildren, and multiple dogs (hers keep running away) together.
We’ve been honest when honest is ugly.
She may be 1500 miles away, but I am closer to her today than I am to any friend in my own neighborhood. We may pray to a different Lord, but I pray to any of all of them that our friendship, our love, can withstand this coming separation, and our bond will be one that lasts a lifetime. Thanks for everything, sister! I love you!