As parents we want the white picket fence and to see the joyous faces stepping down from the bus as we wait for children at the door with dinner in preparation for that evening. But in reality, it takes more hours than not, being away from our precious loved ones in an effort to provide the necessities for them. While I am at work, my child spends 50 plus hours every week in someone else’s care whether it is because of school, daycare or church camp in the summer, someone else other than her mom is teaching her and watching her grow.
I come to work and for the most part, see the same faces 50 hours a week, month after month, year after year. Those people become part of my life. Especially when I come into the office with a greeting each morning and watch my employees as they work toward quitting time so they can, too, join their families at home. As they depart for the evening, I’m always hoping the best for their safe return the following morning.
On Tuesday, that hope was dimmed as I got the text from a coworker that I had lost one of my own, Kathy Venturino.
I remember very well the emotions that flooded me, the loss I felt. Immediately, I thought of her co-workers, my employees. I knew I had to call them together as many of them had been asking about her recently. I witnessed each of them accept the news in their own way and then pull together as co-workers often do and build one another up, sharing memories of the time we shared with Kathy throughout her course of 23 years here at the Daily Times. I thought of the business community and how many of them would feel the loss after handling their accounts with her during her longevity in our billing office.
Her family came to mind and her own children. She had sacrificed time away from them as a dedicated employee. And in the afternoon, I was flooded with Kathy’s memories and imagined she would tell me as she had done so many times before as the mother of “Times”, there’s work to do. So I pulled up the boot straps and put the smile on, comforted those needing it and carried on. I will say that evening when I got home everyone got an extra tight hug. Make the time to create the memories with those you love because in the end that is what we have left.
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