I heard of the passing of a retired, former colleague this morning. Just last night, as I was about to turn over, I said to myself I wonder how he’s doing. He had been ill for quite a while, following a heart attack, after which a myriad of treatment-related issues followed. It was inevitable that he would never be the jovial man he had been before the cardiac arrest, but the news has still left me feeling awfully sad.
Seven is considered in many cultures to be a lucky number; in some even spiritual. I think that in this instance, it’s both.
Today, seven years ago, my life changed. I landed a job at a company that has afforded me the opportunity to grow both personally and professionally and allowed me to utilize my talents, all in a safe, happy working environment. In the time I’ve been here, I’ve picked up scraps with some colleagues, but that is an occupational hazard everywhere. The difference is that the people I work with are not just like family, they are.
I was saying to Nikita, whom I sometimes carpool with, that I still remember my first day. I parked my car in the visitor’s bay and my boss came to me and pointed to a bay demarcated for my car. I didn’t do much that day, because my boss had just returned from a two-week-long overseas visit. I was shown to my office and then taken through the factory to meet everyone. The rest of the day I settled in.
In the time I’ve been here I’ve got to put my writing- and proofreading skills to good use. I also received incredible support when I decided to complete the final subject for my tertiary qualification. I’ve been mentored by incredible leaders, admonished when necessary by one father-figure in particular, teased like a little sister by some colleagues and carried by others when things have not been all sunshine-and-rosy. See, family.
How many of you reading this can honestly say that going to work isn’t something you abhor, but look forward to? How many of you can say that spending time with your colleagues is not something you do simply because of the pay cheque at the end of the month?
I can, because seven years ago, when I walked through the door, I wasn’t half the person I am today, and for that I’m grateful.
Here’s to the next leg of the journey – and of course, cake to celebrate!