|Well…how was your day? I asked sincerely speaking into the phone.
Better than yesterday, she replied.
This always did not bode well for a good conversation and told me of her mood.
Okayyyy…so things didn’t go well yesterday? Knowing fully where it was going to lead.
Then the stories flowed how wronged she was. A load of work was heaped on her from a fill in administrator that knew nothing of the nursing job she held.
I agreed with her, made a few inquires how she thought she could’ve changed the situation, or just talked it out with admin on how much work she was getting put on her.
No, you just don’t understand. You can’t just do those things. Wouldn’t make a difference anyway.
I adverted the conversation by describing the day’s activities I performed. Nothing noteworthy or enticing, just getting thru the day. I heard her yawn in the background, but I dismissed it as a long day at work.
Oh, by the way, One of my co-worker's wife (who’s a nurse also) had the same thing happen to her, in the same manner that it did to you.
Really? What could that have been?
Talking with John, her husband, I found out she was on the floor making rounds when one of the patients fell and cracked their head pretty bad. Seems the aides had left the bed jacked up pretty high, then he fell trying to get out of bed. Naturally, being the nurse on the floor she made all the calls for an ambulance, doctors, family, and social workers, then called admin to let them know what transpired. After all was said and done, she was called into the office and dressed down on why she didn’t contact everyone on the list!
There was no list posted! she lamented. So I called those I could reach. “Well, that’s no excuse! You should have called us immediately!
John explained how he then received a dozen texts and several angry phone calls from his wife on how shitty things were and she needed him to come RIGHT NOW to deliver meds for her migraine headache. I sympathized with his wife’s predicament and understood how she felt.
The same thing happened to you, didn’t it babe?
I was assaulted then with a barrage of verbiage. How dare I show her that much sympathy! I never showed her the same sympathy when the situation happened to her!
What are you talking about? Did I not agree that you were treated unfairly? On how badly they performed their jobs and you get the blame?
Well, you just don’t seem that sympathetic towards my problems as you do others.
A long silence followed before I spoke again. Well, not much more to say then, good night.
I thought for a time. Conversations like this seem to be happening more frequent and the personal attacks on everything I said were getting uglier with each round. It was getting to the point I just had no desire to have a conversation with her anymore.
A while back I told her that I knew when the end of summer was near because the telephone poles would cast 'long shadows' on the road even before the days would grow short. It made me sad to know a change was coming, and not for the better. The bitter cold and lack of sunshine always made me feel hollow inside as the long shadows predicted it’s forthcoming.
Nothing is worse than to see true love die. The bitter cold for lack of conversation, the dimming of brightness from cruel comments and the dull grey left behind from the demeaning of a person.
I see the long shadows cast themselves now on our love, making me sad because I know it heralds the start of the end.