When I got to work on Monday, Sue called me into her office and told me that Barb was in the hospital. My stomach dropped, my heart sank, and my eyes spontaneously welled. Sue told me not to panic and that it was a good thing she was being treated.
But that didn’t really do much to quell my crackling nerves. In the last almost-2 years, Barb has firmly planted herself on my short list of favorite people. She has been more of a mom to me than my own biological mom EVER has and I appreciate her so much, it’s immeasurable. I tell her everything and she is one of the few people who can make me feel like everything is going to be OK. Now she’s in the hospital and I feel so helpless because I just want to be able to reciprocate that for her, but I’m such an emotional spaz that I’m sure I would only wind up stressing her out in the end. (Seriously, I’m terrible at these things!)
We’ve been texting all week, but I haven’t heard from her since she had surgery last night. (Sue assures me it was a routine procedure, and Barb’s dad told her she made it through just fine, so there’s that at least!)
I was talking to Henry about it last night and I started to get all choked up. “See, I do care about people sometimes!” I pointed out.
“Yeah, surprisingly,” he said, and he really did look surprised, too.
With Barb gone all week (and at least another month as well), the office feels so dead. She has such a huge, fun presence that the atmosphere has honestly changed in her absence. And in the short time she’s been in my life, she already knows me so well, because Barb’s the type of person who takes the time to get to know someone.
Just the other week, Carey offered Barb a box of baked goods, to which Barb responded with, “For future reference, always offer stuff to Erin first.” SEE? BECAUSE SHE KNOWS ME.
She’s the type of person to go back to a flea market and buy a creepy-ass doll for someone for Christmas, after learning about how much that person desperately wanted the doll but their BOYFRIEND said NO.
She’s the type of person you want around if if your water breaks in a public restroom.
She’s the type of person who brings a kid a present to their mom’s birthday party, just so they won’t feel left out when their mom is opening her presents.
She’s the type of person who will embrace a person’s inner-weirdness and pore over a book of death scenes with them, because she is a weirdo too.
She is the person that everyone whines and cries to at work, because they know that not only will she listen, but she will care. (Or at least pretend to.)
She’s just Barb, and she’s pretty much the most awesome person I know.
But it’s Barb’s turn to come first. Let’s all give her a shout out today. She’s the most generous and caring person I know, and now it’s time for her to get all that back. Maybe you don’t know Barb in real life, but you have probably read about her on here, and if she happens to read this after she gets out of the hospital, I’m sure it will lift her spirits, so leave her a get well comment. She deserves it!
Get well soon, Barb. We all miss the hell out of you!!