On Monday, I went to my former job and had lunch with the women I worked with for three years. Really, they're a nice group of people. I was fortunate to feel comfortable shortly after I started. I think people in healthcare just have those personalities, regardless if they're involved directly in patient care.
I just showed up and surprised them, so I was thrilled that only two people had taken the day off. In fact, two of the three mean old ladies (MOLs) were there. We got carry out and spent an hour looking at my wedding pictures and laughing. It was so relaxing and great to see these people again.
Yesterday morning, I received a message on my cell phone. MOL1 was obviously upset about something, so I called her back immediately. It turns out that MOL2 had passed away Monday evening. She was on her way to her first cardio rehab session and felt too ill to go. She made it to her building and collapsed in the lobby.
It may seem disrespectful to some that I would still refer to her as MOL, but honestly, it's an endearment. She was a crazy old bird! She had more personality in her tiny little feet and than the majority of people do in their entire bodies! She was passionate about her church, about service and about her family. I cannot tell you how many adorable stories I heard about her two granddaughters. She loved to tell stories about her three grown kids. And let me tell you, the tales she had about growing up Irish in an Italian neighborhood on the South Side. HAH!
I know how strong her faith was and that she knew what was going to happen to her. I find such comfort in that. I know losing a coworker (an ex-coworker at that) is nothing like losing a dear friend or a family member, but it's amazing how close you get to someone you spend half of your waking hours with. You care just as much about their happiness, their lives, as anyone else. So, yeah, it means a great deal to me that she knew peace and faith.
In the last twelve hours, I've been more reflective than usual. I've been on somewhat of a spiritual journey the past few months - searching for something. Losing someone close to me made realize that I do feel lost and I do need to keep exploring and learning, to know peace. It of course, made me think of how fleeting life is. MOL2 was younger than my dad. She won't get to see her grandkids go on their first dates, graduate from high school, go to college, get married. They'll miss out on sharing those experiences with her. I keep telling the Targo that we don't want to miss those things with our parents, that life is unpredictable, and eventually we'll run out of tomorrows to "wait until." I want to share my children with my parents and the Targo's. I want them to be around for those momentous events. This stuff has been in the back of my mind for a while, but it became important - insistent - yesterday.
God bless, Cheryl. I'll miss you.