When I wasn’t useful anymore.

I used to work for you, well it’s not like you ever paid me – Yeah, the occasional lunch or a movie (literally only 2), but never clear renumeration for the work I was doing. It was nothing amazing mostly stocktake, packing and unpacking boxes and seeing as I was only working part-time at that point I guess, I did have the time to help you. The way you stringed me along through the four years of work, was easy for you “when we are up and running, we will actually hire you”. Meaning when your business finally took off, you would hire me full time. Well after four years I sort of gave up… moved on and began my career, not that I was waiting for you “to get big”, but I understood how this business worked and it was an easy solution to the becoming of age trope, “get a job”!

I still worked for you occasionally, but instead of being a weekly arrangement this became more a monthly thing. As I started working full-time I was naturally just less available to you. Eventually you did hire someone (only 3-6 months after I had stopped being so available to), I wasn’t mad, I wasn’t even angry. I was simply just disappointed. In a way I understood why you didn’t hire me, I had started working full time and I wasn’t going to be available when you needed me. However, some acknowledgement of what I had done, would have been nice – even just a hey thanks for helping us out back then… it wouldn’t have needed to be any grand gesture, just a. simple thanks would have been enough.

Week after week, I had been there – I had helped in extreme cold and heat, sick or no sick – I turned up and helped. I work tirelessly and without complaint. At the time it didn’t matter to me, I was helping someone from the ground up. But it did feel like a slap in the face that you didn’t even take the time to acknowledge that I did something to help you and your business get started. The biggest disappointment came later though, when I started working full time, and you stopped contacting me altogether, so seeing as I wasn’t there to be pushed and pulled to suit your every need – you stopped inviting me to all the social outings, no more movies, no more dinners….. It was amazing how after 3 short months, I went from seeing you three times a week, to seeing you maybe three times a year.

My sister never understood, we had quite a few tiffs over it early on. I was happy you had hired her, she needed to work far more than me – and she has a more fluid schedule in the sense that when you call she is usually available to help out. She is a great worker and often you take advantage of her – but knowing how delicate the arrangement was for me, I would never interfere – see I didn’t care when you were taking advantage of me… but now that you are taking advantage of her on a regular basis, I find it very hard to hold my tounge.

It’s funny, if you were a boy I was seeing, I’d have kicked you to the curb a lot earlier, but because you were a friend I let it continue without thought as I thought we were helping one another….     …..pffft, 20-20 hind sight…. I just stopped being useful.



Like Cheese down a Chalkboard

I work long days – often 8 – 12 hours shifts, six days a week. I don’t often get down time, and honestly I don’t really feel I need it altogether that much. I enjoy being busy. However, sometimes working long hours does catch up with me, especially on a Friday. I come home from a long day at work, and you are always so good to me.

The moccasins are by the front door, kettle is on for a fresh pot of tea and you are just about to run me a bubblebath. Before heading into the bathroom to unwind from the day, I collapse on the bed. I am spent.

You come in to chat to me and we are having a discussion about something, god only knows what, I really can’t remember- we somehow got on the topic of something that really annoyed me and I turned to you and said “like cheese down a chalkboard”. I was so brain dead, I managed to mash up two sayings, “like chalk and cheese” and “like nails down a chalkboard”.

I didn’t hear it and you started laughing, I watched the joy, play and dance across your face – you laugh, a loud, jolly, belly laugh and it made me happy. When you finally gained enough air back in your body to tell me what you were laughing at – me, at my expense. I pouted and said “I was so smart all day”, and you smile and said “Yes baby, you were – which is why it’s so cute when you muddle up your words”.

I breath a sigh of relief, somehow, knowing that at the end of a long week, when I am totally spent, I am still able to make you smile, gives me a great sense of accomplishment. Watching all the happy emotions dance across your face makes me content because at last I am home, it is the weekend and we are together. Even if we are smudging “cheese down chalkboards” in my mind and even if I am muddling up all the words, it doesn’t matter, as long as I can see you smile.