Yesterday I was at work in my store 1381. I have talked about my store on many occasions. It is my happy place. It is where I go to numb out the feelings and memories that never seem to stop these days. It’s my moonlighting job. I work in accounting during the day and a lingerie store at nights and on weekends.
Anyway, yesterday the store was not my happy place. A woman came in and demanded that I show her some loungewear. She was rude, demanding, and DRUNK. She was loudly cursing, and I immediately told her that I can talk to her, but only if she stopped cursing. She apologized and said she had way too much to drink for dinner. She kept talking about a yellow jogging suit that she saw on Facebook. I tried to explain to her that we didn’t have that one in the store or online. (Never actually!) As we continued to walk around the store, she is apologizing and ranting and she begins telling me that she is having surgery next week. She tells me she is scared to death, and that’s why she drank too much etc. She tells me she is having hip surgery, etc.
I am completely triggered. This is my dead mother. She has come back from the grave. My mom was always on pain meds (slurring at times) and never failed to tell strangers about her medical issues.
As the customer is talking, I’m talking back but I can’t hear myself. I’m just going thru the motions, trying to get her checked out and on her way. As she’s leaving, I tell her, “I’ll pray for you”. Totally against company policy but for some reason I said it. I felt sorry for her, and yet I was so angry with her at that moment.
As soon as she exits, I’m talking to myself. “You are safe now! You are ok! You are ok! You are ok! You are ok!” And then, the negative self-talk happens. “Why are you having to talk yourself down?” “Why are you shaking?” It was a whole internal big deal that no one around me knew was happening.
The point of my story is that I was ok. I didn’t cry. I didn’t hide. I didn’t pass her off to someone else. And that in itself is a big victory! I am starting to heal. Even though it sucks. The journey is hard. And most of the time, I wish for an end to this nightmare story.
But here I am. Going back in the store today, and ready to conquer the day! Congratulations to me. It was hard but I did it.
Until next time, I am being MJ every day.