I’ve sort of been at a loss for what to say here lately.
A woman I worked with reasonably closely was laid off Friday before last.
She died of a heart attack the following Wednesday.
She had three children.
She was 39.
Her death has really thrown me for a loop, which I find surprising. She and I didn’t socialize outside of work and we weren’t terribly close. But there was a kind of kinship between us- we were the loud, outspoken, ballsy broads who tangled with V.D. on a regular basis. She was my partner in bitchy crime. Only she was braver than I was and less concerned with being polite. I never saw her intimidated by anyone. Her abject refusal to give a flying f*** what anyone thought about her might have lost her some professional respect on occasion, but she was unapologetically honest and never tolerated someone trying to disrespect her. She called a spade a f***ing spade. Sure, she was extreme and probably needed to tone it down and “play the game” a bit. But she didn’t. And she didn’t care. And it was what I admired about her most. Being around her made me stronger and more sure of myself. She was an enabler for my inner bitch, God bless her. I’m finding it hard to believe that someone who was not only so young, but such a force, such a powerful person, is now gone.
I should mention, too, that she was absolutely irreverently hilarious. And passionately committed to her kids. That was the thing about her- she was tough and blunt and forceful. But she also had a heart of gold and would fight things that weren’t right in a skinny minute. And then she’d come into my office and we’d have a good laugh about it all. I will miss her laugh and her passion. I will miss how brave I was around her.
I think the best way I can honor her is to be that brave ballsy woman more often. And so I will. For her, you know. You can’t disrespect the dead.
So vaya con dios, my strong woman friend. I am a better person for having worked with you. Give ‘em hell up there.