Don’t Just Be Married To Work

| Working | April 10, 2014

(I work housekeeping for a retirement home. I’ve just worked an entire weekend and a holiday all by myself and I’m exhausted. Typically, when you work a weekend and a holiday, you get the next day off. I wasn’t given it this time and I’m even more tired and cranky by Tuesday. On Wednesday, I have serious doubts about going in, but I decide to grin and bear it. Also worth noting is I’m getting married on Thursday and have arranged to take the day off. My boss has called me into her office just before lunch break.)

Boss: “I was going over the weekend schedule and wondering why it takes so long to finish up. I know I normally say you can leave some things set aside for during the week, but what is it, really?”

Me: “I think it’s just the sheer amount of beds to make, especially when some need to be changed. It takes a lot of time and energy. I know after I finish the beds, I start slowing down because I’ve used a lot of energy up. Everything else is pretty easy. It’s just the beds that really kill the weekends.”

Boss: “What else?”

Me: “I think that’s pretty much it… Weekends wouldn’t be so bad if it weren’t for beds. It gets pretty hard and doesn’t leave much time for anything else, especially if we get called around. And also [Dietary Director] called me and asked me to help in the dining room. I only gave them half an hour, but it still dug into my schedule.”

Boss: “You didn’t have to do that. That’s not our responsibility.”

Me: “I know, but I like to help out. If we’re in a bind on a weekend, the other departments always give us a hand, even though it’s not their job.”

Boss: “You have a point there… For things like that, you do need to tell me so I can make sure you get paid.”

(The conversation carries on in a similar manner, with us just discussing the schedule. I feel myself begin to relax, knowing I’m not in trouble for not leaving at the right time on weekends. Then my boss has one last thing to say.)

Boss: “I need to show you something downstairs.”

Me: *getting nervous* “Is it the avalanche of boxes in the office? I was going to get it cleaned up after lunch.”

Boss: “Just come with me.”

(We stop in front of the residents’ craft room. Through the window, I can see the lights are off and the room is pitch-dark.)

Boss: “Hmm, I don’t have my key.”

Me: “Here, I’ve got it.” *moves to open the door* “Huh, it’s already open…”

(Suddenly, the lights flashed on and all my coworkers and people from other departments screamed out, ‘SURPRISE!’ I nearly fell over in shock! Turned out my boss just wanted to distract me while my coworkers set up a bridal shower for me, complete with presents, pizza, cake, balloons, soda, and so much more! It was the best lunch break ever! My husband-to-be and I almost teared up when we read all the cards and looked through all the presents when I got home. Things like that make my job so worthwhile and make me love the people I work with.)

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