These past couple of weeks have been the worst work weeks that I have ever endured in the last nearly ten years of working. And, this is not me being dramatic. This is me being realistic.
I have always made huge efforts to not get caught up in the work world with the knowledge that work was not my life and the two should not intermingle. Efforts included having hobbies, interests, and a great circle of friends outside of work so I would not become my work and would have a personal life that I was set to enjoy to the fullest.
When I started working, I never wanted to be the kind of person who talked, complained, gossiped, or whatever else it may be that was negative when I was not actually at work. But, sad and most ashamed to say, I became that very person that I did not want to become these past couple of weeks.
But, here’s the funny thing, in the midst of me getting lost in negativity when I complained about all the changes that were happening and that I hated at work, there were pennies from heaven that showered and shone down on me.
My first penny from heaven came when I was drowning myself in the hot and bubbly whirlpool that was massaging all the knots in my back. I was griping about all the lack of communication and miscommunication with the change in structure and flow at my workplace with a woman who I had met a couple times in the locker room, yet felt like we were old friends. When I paused to take a breath, she confessed to me that her husband had late stage cancer and was not doing well. I immediately shut up. How could I complain about work when her husband was fighting for his life? Rather than let me fully shut down, though, this penny from heaven let me vent and carry on for a little while longer until I was wrapped up in her brightness of empathy with how trying and exhausting the work world and all its inner politics are. She left with my business card in my hand for her to contact me for us to chat again over tea, but to solely chatter and NOT complain. I left with her shine and sheen imprinted in me.
My other pennies from heaven came at the 5th annual "PKD Cocktails for a Cure" event that I have attended religiously to accompany and support my kidney buddies for a great cause. Many do not even know about PKD (Polycystic Kidney Disease) and how the kidneys take a massive beating with huge cysts, causing some kidneys to balloon up from the regular fist-size to a football-size until the cysts can bleed and life-threatening fears. In the company of familiar faces and new faces, I danced the night away in my coral dress and sparkly red glasses until I could not feel anything. I listened to and shared stories over pumping music and icy blue cocktails with bright red cherries swimming atop. That night, I also happened to win a beauty gift basket. I had never won anything in my life and I said that at least five times when I went up to grab the huge basket and left clutching it protectively and proudly in my arms like I was cradling a newborn baby.
More pennies from heaven from friends who let me carry and rant on with listening ears, murmurs of agreement, and words of support. Texts and phone calls that were perfectly timed to lift me up and shine and shower down on me when I needed this the most. How many people can say that they have REAL friends to listen to you?
Brighter pennies from heaven of and from friends who are struggling to just stay alive and sane with their own personal life insanities. These pennies from heaven are the signs and reminders that there is always someone worse off than you and that work is not worth the aggravation and frustration in all the years of life and living.
And, probably the brightest pennies from heaven were my stepmother and especially my dad who had my favorite snacks waiting for me while we watched movies and did absolutely nothing. Not even lift one finger.
I had always been the girl who hated change. I was the Type A Control Freak, the predictable planner, and the routine lover. I was the one who never believed in myself that I could be outside of myself to face and endure changes. Yet, my relationship with change was very complex, because although I was afraid of change, I was also afraid of not changing. But, here I am, two weeks later in complete chaos at work with changes after changes and realizing and learning in the process that I am more than capable of bending without breaking. More than that, I’m realizing through all my pennies from heaven that, sometimes or more often than not, changes are necessary to become and grow into the person you never imagined you could be in the best of ways.
This week will soon come to an end. These last two weeks will be a bad memory of how terrible work can really get. But the everlasting results have already left its effects on me about the beauty (rather than the ugly) in changes and all the pennies from heaven that have rained down on me with the riches of strength and support that I needed to keep me grounded and sane with what and who is really important in life.
Just when you are getting caught up in another soap opera drama from someone or even a group of people and the daily grind that makes you forget the focus of what and who are important, step back and stop to think of all your ‘Pennies from Heaven’ and how far you have made it just when you thought you could not even do it—and, yet, you did it and are doing it.
Until we meet again Keep Smilin’,