Bittersweet Good-byes | The Office Shenanigans IX

“If it’s time to go, remember what you’re leaving. Remember the best.” | 11th Doctor | Doctor Who
“People are the best show in the world. And you don’t even pay for the ticket.” | Charles Bukowski

Oh how true that is! We humans afford one another so much amusement not to mention oodles of life-lessons. We’ve got free entertainment all around us and I mean that in the most loving and un-sarcastic way possible. I’m learning to not take myself so seriously and to laugh instead of getting upset at things which won’t matter several hours later. It’s not easy but the Most High has been helping me to see the bigger picture in all of Life. Too often we waste precious time and mental and emotional energy holding grudges, nursing old wounds, worrying about the future, and lashing out when things don’t go according to our plans. It’s taxing until we realize that our Saviour, our Lord and King, wants us to rise above it all with His help and lift our faces toward the sun.

Another lesson The Office has taught me is that when the Most High said “behold, I am making all things new”, He meant it in more ways than one. There’s loads of imagery in the Bible about leaving behind the Old and reaching for the New but these verses in Revelation are the ones I want to focus on for the moment.

” ‘And God shall wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, not crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away.’ Then He who sat on the throne said, ‘Behold, I make all things new.’ And He said to me, ‘Write, for these words are true and faithful.'” | Revelation 21:4-5

Just let those words wash over your soul and meditate on the words of your Creator King. He is making all things new in Him and those words are faithful and true. He’s not a man that He should lie so why should we doubt Him? I’m learning and have learned that when we we think we’re losing things, when we think we’re losing people, the Most High is actually making all things new. He’s giving us exactly what we need even if it’s not what we wanted at the time.

As I’ve mentioned in a previous post, I did NOT want to move to this new office but now, on the other side of it all, I wouldn’t change ANYTHING. Not a single blessed thing. Switching offices has proved to be EXACTLY what I needed at this time in my life and I keep thanking God every day (quite literally) that He brought all these lovely, quirky, brilliant, adorable, strange, unique, dazzling humans into my life at a time when I needed them most even though I didn’t know it. He’s making all things new for me and showing me what it means when the former things pass away and the new things come to take their place and that it really is all going to be okay.

So even though, in context, those verses from Revelation speak about the New Heavens and the New Earth and the promised Glory to come, they can also apply to our mortal life here in the Shadowlands.

I’m really not good with change at all. Like really not good. It takes me awhile to adapt to new situations and new places and new people. But I am growing in that area with His help and He’s used The Office to encourage my soul and to show me that I’m not lying stagnant like I often think I am; I’m growing and maturing and leaving the Old behind in favour in the New.

Also, the Most High taught me that getting to know other lovely humans can be one of the grandest adventures of all. I’m beyond grateful for all those lovely humans of The Office and I’m gonna miss every single one of them more than they’ll ever know.

Sheila with her flaming-red, curly-Irish hair, and her love for motorcycles and animals. Mikhail with his adorable smile, the way he ducks his head when he passes me in the hallway, his six-foot-two/three height, his Timberlands, and his ponytail. Toby with his sweet caring soul, his insatiable love for food and tech and movies, his teddy-bear-esque personality, his Jersey accent, and the way he shuffles down the hallway to check up on all of us throughout the day. Liza with her loud yet endearing voice which has wormed its way into my soul in the loveliest of ways, her Jersey accent, her stellar life advice, and her ability to let people know what’s up as only she can. Kenobi with his trademark snap-back and sweatshirts, his scruffy black beard, and his sweet “G’Night” at the end of each day. Waldo with his key-jangling tendencies, his little-kid-soul wrapped up in a father’s body, and his ability to make everything into a song or a unique catchphrase. Newman and Maria with their telepathy borne out of however-many-years of marriage. Kristoff with his distinct high-pitched voice and his incredible patience throughout each day as Waldo, Toby, Rick, and various others stop by to regale him with news of the latest tech gadget or movie or TV show or video game. Ava, May, Milo, Reginald, Steve, Jessa, Nathan, Paul, Rina, and the list goes on. I’m thankful for each one of them.

They taught me to take Life as it comes, to enjoy food while realizing that it’s always the answer to pretty much everything, to appreciate the little things, to have patience with unexpected interruptions, to look for ways to bless others, to find the Joy and Adventure and Beauty in the mundane, to not be afraid to smile at strangers, to see how amazing it is when you allow the foreign to become the familiar, to work as hard as you can in the task that the Most High has set before you, to drink coffee like there’s no tomorrow, to hold your friends close and widen the friendship circle when it’s time to do so, to find something to celebrate each and every day, to understand that Life really is what you make it, to expect the unexpected, and to soar.

Wednesday was my last official day in The Office and I was close to tears when I left.

We’d had several days of non-stop rain (which I LOVE) and then Wednesday dawned in glorious sunshine and it was like everyone just exhaled heavily, inhaled gently, and came alive. Ellissa and I sat in our office doing end-of-the-semester admin work for our jobs, wondering why they piled everything on us when we were about to graduate….But it was all good because we’d handed in our last final the day before and all the stress had almost fallen away. You know when you’ve been stressed about something and then it’s over but it still feels like a dream? Like it’s not really over. Like the reality of the fact that it IS over hasn’t fully sunk in as yet. Yeah, that’s how I was feeling Wednesday morning when I stopped at Wawa for a coffee because Wawa Wednesday isn’t something to be taken lightly.

Let me just take a moment and sing Wawa’s praises to the skies. Seriously, people, get yourself to a Wawa and watch the magic happen. Apparently, it’s only an East Coast wonder so my apologies if you’re a West Coast-er or a Midwesterner orrrr if you don’t live in the good ole U.S. of A. at all. Buuuuut if you’re an East Coast-er, take a little field trip to a Wawa and you will not be disappointed. I’m not talking so much about the food as I am about the atmosphere (though their coffee is top-notch). There’s just something about that Wawa Vibe. Everyone’s extraordinarily nice and friendly and that’s sayin’ a lot for Jersey, lemme tell ya. All the big, burly construction guys who actually have hearts of gold under their tough exteriors. All the cops, fire-fighters, EMTs, world-changing warriors; the ones who are running to the sound of evil and chaos to silence it when most would be high-tailing it in the other direction. All the ordinaries like myself. All of us getting our morning cups and smiling at one another as if to say “we’re all in this together, let’s tackle Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday with everything we’ve got”. Holding doors for one another, three guys helping two women break into their car ’cause they’d locked themselves out of it and the engine was running with the keys still in the ignition. Total strangers. Fighting against the current of this cold, cold world and heating up the night with kindness and Joy. That’s the Wawa Vibe and I sure hope you get to experience it one day 🙂

Mmkay, back to The Office.

Ellissa and I continued saving the University one email at a time and the emails were piling up. It was just such a comfortable, lovely feeling. A stellar way to end my time at The Office. I sat on the floor, cross-legged, sorting through paraphernalia for my job, organizing documents, printing documents, chatting with Ellissa about concert tickets, online shopping, and departmental shenanigans; smiling and waving as Toby and Waldo and Kenobi walked by, enjoying that nostalgic feeling. It was grand.

Later, I took a little field trip to President’s Hall for several documents and saw this girl rollerblading around campus, her extremely long and wavy hair flying out behind her like a glorious mane. She just looked so incredibly graceful and the sunlight was slanting through the trees and undergraduates were taking pictures in their caps and gowns and fancy clothes and getting a head start on graduation shenanigans before the actual big day on Monday. And I just wish I could plant you in that scene but my words aren’t doing it justice by a long-shot. I was listening to Wilderlove by John Mark McMillan (highly recommend his album Mercury & Lightning…a stunning work of art right there) and the song just complimented the scene and now whenever I hear it, I’m gonna be taken back to that Wednesday when so many things were ending but so many amazing things were also just beginning and the Most High God was making all things new as only He can.

As I cleaned out my desk, asked Sheila and Toby for a bag to put my things in, and savoured my last official moments in The Office, I thanked my Father for the opportunity He’d given me and the Adventure that I hadn’t been expecting, that I’d hated in the beginning, but that I grew to love with all my heart and soul.

Toby walked by earlier, saw the disaster on my floor with all the documents and paraphernalia for the Senate, and asked if a bomb had gone off (or something like that) :). I explained my messy work-space and then he said he had thought I’d jumped ship out of sheer overwhelmed-ness (yes, I created a word haha) but I’d just left for a bathroom break. I told him it was my last day. He got all wistful and said “you’ll be missed” and that melted my soul, I can’t even tell you. I’ve often wondered if I’d made as much of an impact on those lovely humans as they’ve made on me. If the Most High has used me to bless even just one of them, I will be eternally grateful. My friend Erulisse has begun an adventure of her own and when she left her job, she said “I don’t want to leave a legacy, I don’t care if they remember me, only Jesus”. Lyrics to a Casting Crowns song but the sentiment my dear friend echoed as her own resonated with me on the eve of my departure. While it’s nice to be remembered, it’s better to have pointed others to Christ by your words and actions. And I can only pray that I’ve done so, however imperfectly.

Sheila bade me farewell on my way out as I stood in the foyer with a full Trader Joe’s paper bag in one hand (courtesy of Sheila), my gigantic blue water bottle in the other, and my tote bag slung over one shoulder. We chatted for a bit and I’m beyond grateful I gave her a chance and pushed past my discomfort at her poker face and found a friend.

I’ll be back in for a few days on and off throughout the summer until the job has ended and it’ll honestly be like coming home. Cheers to brand new starts, fresh sights of Glory, dazzling Adventure, pushing back the Dark, and rising every single time with the Most High’s help. If it’s time to go, I’m gonna remember what I’m leaving. I’m gonna remember the best like Eleven said, and I’m gonna be brave, strong, and glad. In the immortal words of that endearing Pirate, Captain Jack Sparrow (which is more than fitting since my University’s mascot is a pirate….), now, bring me that horizon.

These are some quotations which remind me of The Office and everything that came with it. I hope you enjoy them 🙂

The Office Shenanigans

the office shenanigans 2

the office shenanigans 3

the office shenanigans 4

the office shenanigans 7

the office shenanigans 8

the office shenanigans 6

the office shenanigans 9

the office shenanigans 5

| We’re in a War, my friends, and we all need Courage on the Front Lines ❤ |

 

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One thought on “Bittersweet Good-byes | The Office Shenanigans IX

  1. Pingback: A Fond Farewell | The Office Shenanigans X | courage on the front-lines

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