One of the things that sustained me through bedrest, premature delivery, the NICU, and my high stress maternity leave was the supportive group of folks back at the office. My colleagues, and more specifically, my supervisor, ran interference on administrative tasks, helped with errands, sent concerned emails, and just generally 'got it.'
When I returned to work after a seven month absence (most of it courtesy of leave donations) I felt comfortable in my newfound semi-catatonic state. People were patient with my shiny new lousy temper and my complete lack of short-term memory.
When I decided to leave, my supervisor, W, did everything he could to help my transition to the new job. It wasn't exactly the most polite thing to do--take an extra 3 months of leave and then split within weeks of returning to the office but W understood and supported my decision.
I found out today that W's wife is severely ill. The prognosis isn’t good but the illness is treatable and they are surrounded by a supportive group of friends and family who have already mobilized.
W and his wife are the very able and loving parents of two young children and just overall stellar people.
If you happen to swing by here and read this, please direct a prayer or a positive thought toward them tonight.
I'm constantly reminded as I wade through my 'after' that families all over the world are just departing their 'before' and I wish I could do more to help.