Wednesday, December 12, 2012

More Frienemies

My former co-worker went through Michael’s first diagnosis and treatment of head and neck cancer with me. She was a good support. At the same time, she was going through a major transition moving her mother-in-law from Florida back to Albuquerque to live with her and her husband. They have no children, and she hadn’t really known her mother-in-law very well before this. She and her husband are very active in their Protestant church, so we shared our faith… I came to realize that she was pretty selfish when she complained almost daily about her mother-in-law. She was extremely nit-picky from my point of view, since the lady was ill and not long for this world. They considered putting her in assisted living when she fell, got sick and died. Later, I found out that she had thrown me under the bus. The business was in trouble, and duties were being shuffled around. I was assigned to help her without a pay raise. I was thankful for the job, and I normally did assist her with no complaining as part of my new job description. One day was particularly difficult, Michael was really sick and needed me, so I took an extra long lunch without pay, which put me behind. Near the end of the day, I let her know that I wasn’t able to get to the task. I received a frown, and nothing more was said. A few weeks later, I was called in and reprimanded by our boss. I let it go, eventually was layed off and she went to another job. A few months later, she took me to lunch since she knew I was out of a job and Michael was still sick.
Now Michael has been on hospice, and we had a date for lunch again today…her treat. When I told her that his doctor’s appointment had been changed to a later time, and asked if she could be flexible since she was taking a ½ day off work anyway, she said quite shortly, “No, I’ll be gone.” I told her fine, and I was sorry and maybe we could do it another time. I decided to write her off as a friend. While I was considering erasing her name from my contacts, she called again and said, “I think I’ll change my mind. Where and when would you like to meet? I feel bad.” I’m glad she reconsidered, because I don’t think she has many friends. Maybe that’s why, and maybe she’s changing for the better. It was really nice to get out. Update – at lunch, we were talking about girl stuff and I was saying that my hair is getting too long and I had been cutting it myself. She asked me, “Where do you get your hair done?”. I told her Supercuts, and she said, “let’s go and I’ll get it for you.” I needed to go get Michael at the Cancer Center, so I thanked her and said, no, that she’d done enough. The following week, I got a Supercuts gift card from her in the mail. She’s a blessing, and I’m glad I was able to let a few things slide, be patient and didn’t write her off.

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