This past year, I’ve learned that my work family is just as important to me as my own family. Like relatives, there are some that you want to hang around with more than others, but they are a part of your life just the same. Losing two members of our department to terminal illness found me tapping into a well of grief that I had never experienced before, and at the same time, showed me that I need to appreciate all the people who touch my life every day. One of those people is my very special co-worker Sophie. When we joined the same team over a decade ago, we became instant friends. It didn’t take me long to figure out that not only was the most organized person I had ever seen in the workplace, she was also a super shopper. Over the years, we brought in all our extra coupons so we could share and swap with each other and the rest of our group. I don’t think I ever had to pay regular price for diapers, because Sophie would clip me all the Huggies and Pampers coupons she could find, just to save me money. Almost everything I know about shopping and saving I learned from Sophie, the original Coupon Queen!
Sophie taught me how to be truthful but kind, and believe me, this lady can say whatever she wants to and get away with it because she’s nice. She’s advised me on work, clothes, makeup, marriage, parenting and even embarrassing topics that you would normally never speak to anyone about other than your family doctor. How lucky can a person be to have that kind of relationship with someone who isn’t a relative? Today, Sophie is retiring and I’m going to miss her like crazy. Of course we’ll keep in touch but it will be hard not to see her every day in the office. Sophie, I wish you all the best in retirement!