02 March 2015

Grateful Heart.

So I know I've mentioned my work mom on here before, but for this week's grateful heart, I thought I would share how we became so close & why she means so much to me, so enjoy!

I started work at Walmart in July of 2010. The day I did my cashier simulation, a lady came up to me and said Hi, I’m Karen and I’ll be your favorite CSM. I thought she was sweet and friendly. I was a cashier for just about 7 months when I had a little girl come up to me and call me funny looking and I said thank you and then she came back and said no you’re really funny looking, so I walked around my bagging carousel and said you know what? I’d rather look like me and have manners, than look like you and have none at all. & anybody that’s worked retail can tell you, you don’t mouth off to customers, you let what they say roll off of your back and you just take it. But I didn't for whatever reason that day. I ran up to the podium and it was Karen that I confided in, and what she told me has stuck with me to this day, she told me that she was proud of me, that she loved me, & that if I got any flack from management for it to send them to her & she would deal with them.
The next month, she had me up training at the service desk. She was the first one I told in July of 2011 that I had gotten promoted to said service desk. That’s when we really started getting close.
We were good friends from then on, and somewhere in there, we just got really close and then February 2013 came up and I heard another CSM talking about Karen behind her back, and I was fed up, so I went to Karen and I told her. Karen point blank told the other CSM to stop, this CSM then came to me and got in my face, well inside of my personal bubble and yelled at me. In the middle of the front end. That’s when we started referring to ourselves as mother and daughter. She’s like another mom to me and I’m her third daughter.

We had a few more issues with that CSM through the winter, summer came around and Karen tells me that there is a full time CSM position open in the closest town with a store.
To say that I was scared that we wouldn’t be working together anymore would be a giant understatement. She was back and forth for a good five or six days. I would miss her like crazy if she decided to go, but I couldn’t let my feelings or emotions get in the way, because I knew that this move could be a positive thing and fresh start for her. But on the last day before she had to give them her answer, I asked her if I could have a minute with her, and she agreed. I remember I told her, I am going to try and do this without crying, but no guarantees. I told her, I don’t want you to think that I’m not affected and that I don’t care about what your decision is, because I do, but I don’t want my feelings to dissuade you from doing what you feel is best. This is when I started crying, I said, I will miss you a lot if you decide to go and I love you, but you have to do what is best for you. I gave her a big hug and she told me she loved me. She obviously stayed at our store, and the rest of the summer was pretty good. Karen was out for vacation and then she had shingles in September. We were getting back into our routine of working and having fun and then I get home from running errands on October 9th, and I hop in the shower, once I get out of the shower, I see that I have five missed calls and two text messages from Bee, my work bestie basically saying you need to call me now, it’s important.
So I call her, we say our hellos and then she gets right to the point.
Bee-Meghan are you at home?
Bee-Mom’s or Dad’s?
Me-Dad’s. Why, what’s going on?
Bee-I need you to sit down
(This is where I had that little voice in my head saying KAREN KAREN KAREN!)
Me-Okay, I’m sitting down.
Bee-I need you to promise me that you won’t yell or scream when I tell you this.
Me-I can’t do that when I don’t know what you’re going to tell me Bee.
Bee-Meghan, Karen had a stroke this afternoon at work.
This is when I started hyperventilate a little bit, okay scratch that a lotta bit.
I got as much information as I could from her and this is where I knew that Bee and I were sisters more than best friends, she told me, “Meghan, I just knew I had to call and tell you, I knew I couldn’t let you walk into work tomorrow because I knew you wouldn’t be able to just hold it in, you would lose it.
I remember trying to tell myself that I didn’t have a right to be this shook up, because she wasn’t my mom, but K and J's mom, but I talked it out with some of my work friends and they totally understood. Because I have some of the best coworkers le duh.
Before Karen’s stroke, I knew we had a special relationship, but I don’t think I realized how much our coworkers realized that as well, because one of my closest cashier friends came up to me the next day and was like, are you okay, should you be here? Can you make it through today? I think that was probably the second hardest day of work I’ve ever had. It was so hard knowing that she was supposed to be working, but was in the hospital instead.
She tried to come back two or three times and it was way too soon, but she’s stubborn as all get out, and there was no telling her what we thought. I remember her husband Mark, who tries to be tough, but is just a huge lovable teddy bear, coming in once she finally decided to go on leave and us asking how she was, and him telling us that she had lost about 5%, which really isn’t that much in the grand scheme of things, and him saying that he’d rather have her at 95% then not have her here at all, which is obvious of course, but the way he said it, you could just hear how much he loves his wife, cue the aww from the hopeless romantic aka me.
I honestly think our friendship was strengthened so much that time she was on leave, because we talked almost every day, if not multiple times a day via facebook.
She came back from her medical leave in early February and we were back in business. Her father-in-law passed away in late February and we talked over facebook multiple times when she was down in Illinois. This was right before I moved into my apartment, and she told me that she a quilt she wanted to give me & I thought it was such a sweet gesture, because it was something from her family, and she knew that her father-in-law would have loved me. Cue the aww once again.
Most of March was business as usual as well. She was scheduled to work a 6 to 10 on Friday, March 28th, but decided to pick up the full shift of 1 to 10 instead. I had that gut feeling/intuition that something was wrong on like Wednesday of that week, but didn’t know what was wrong. Anyway, she came in and usually she’ll greet me with Hi, squeezebox! along with a big hug, but she walked in and the first thing out of her mouth was I shouldn’t have picked up the first four hours of this shift. Red flag #1. The second red flag was she was snappy with me anytime I tried to talk to her and very on edge, I was going to corner her and as her to talk to me when I went on break at 4, but around 3:30, when one of the CSMs was supposed to be going home, I notice a few things, 1) the one CSM I do see is running around like a chicken with her head cut off, 2) another one is running across the front-end and 3) Karen was nowhere to be found. I called one of them over and was like what is going on and aren’t you supposed to be off at 3:30? & before she could answer, I felt that intuition again Karen, something’s wrong with her. & I had a myriad of emotions running through me at that moment. I was upset with M and A because Karen had asked them to double count the cash drawer because she couldn’t get it to add up and they brushed her off, but mostly I was scared. I had my first and (Hopefully) only panic attack. I wouldn’t wish that feeling of being so helpless and the feeling of my walls closing in on me on anyone. I was like a shell of myself the rest of the evening, until I finally got some news on how she was doing. She ended up having a TIA or mini-stroke. Worst day of work ever.

In mid-April, Karen’s daughter and I had some words and of course I told Karen. She told me that K was just jealous of our friendship. I told her that she intimidated me and I don’t intimidate easily. K got over it and I even went to her wedding in June, where I caught the bouquet!
We've had our share of drama and gossip about us, but I honestly don't know what I'd do without Karen in my corner. She's my partner in crime & like another momma to me.  
Linking up with Emily & Meg

Before I go, you may have noticed that I completely updated my look over the weekend, formerly They Call Her Meghan is now Meghan Anna. 
Bloglovin' should have automatically updated for everyone now, & I transferred my IG & Twitter over to @MeghanAnnaBlogs 
URL is now MeghanAnna,com !

*linking this post up with Shelly for Queen Bees link-up 11/10/15

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