A person was fired at work today. I hesitated before writing the noun down, since at times they’ve felt like a friend, at times like a colleague, and at times a person with a personal backstory. It’s incredibly sad to me. I can make comments about it’s reflections on our want to be needed and how that might be something we get out of a life of work, but it’s hard to think about some of the particulars that I’d like to speak for themselves. His wife was diagnosed with Cancer not too long ago. His kids are entering the danger years of adolescence and uncertainty about the future, he has to wonder who values him. Who values any of us?

I’ve spent a fair number of  evenings when we both worked late, just chatting a late night at work. There was a fair amount of griping – doesn’t that word convey just a real pejorative sense? – on his part about how his role at work was perceived and the (my read) powerlessness he had to do anything about a system that just didn’t want him around any more. I use the word ‘system’, but he usually personalized it. I think that’s normal. It’s not normal or right for anyone, and I mean anyone, to have a life turned from anxiety to outright fear. What’s wrong with us?

 

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