Thursday, October 3, 2013

Celebrating an Angel!!!

Oh my it's gonna be a long day... I feel like I could sleep for another 10 hours or so... yep nice random number there.  If I didn't want most of my vacation so badly, I would definitely call in.  Sadly, too much to do today.  Couple more cups of coffee should make it happen.

Had to go to the dentist last night for work on a crown.  We discovered, quite painfully, that I evidently am a bit resistant to the numbing agents they use.  Four very painful shots into the jaw later we were able to finish, only slightly numb.   That is a lot of junk in my system and it is making me feel gross.  Not to mention that 4 shots in the jaw has a not so pleasant end result the next day.  Ya know, looking like someone punched you in the face and not being able to open your mouth or swallow without pain.  Tooth feels great, the rest of the side effects... well lets just say, no fun!


I don't believe I would miss today even if I didn't have budgets, reviews, a huge volunteer project and a few minor projects going on though.  Today is Ms. Norma's 77th birthday!  And she needs to be celebrated! She is an amazing woman, and I simply love her hard working determined little soul!  I hired Ms Norma a few years back... four or five now.  She humored me and amazed me at the same time.  Ms Norma has a gypsy heart if ever there was one and she showed up for her interview in true fashion.  She's probably only about four feet tall and soaking wet might weigh 80 pounds, she is so tiny and appears frail for just a second, a very small second. 

She showed up that first day in a floor length gypsy style skirt (my kinda girl)! A purple v-neck shirt, heals that made my feet hurt, several big earrings dangling in her ears, a diamond sparkling on her nose and a bright purple dot in the middle of her forehead.  All of it topped off with devil red lipstick!  I think I fell in love with that angel on the spot!

Her wit and intelligence floored me in that interview, she has more experience in her pinky than most of us will ever hope to attain in our lifetimes.  And if there was any doubt in my mind that she was going to be working with us it ended the moment she looked at my then maintenance tech and told him "don't worry sweetie, I can teach you a few things!" Boom, just like that she deflated his ego and won both of our hearts.

I hope when I am 57 to have an ounce of her energy and determination.  She quietly molds and schools us.  No challenge is too big, no request too unimportant.  In the four hours a day that she is in the building I have never seen her slow down, give less than her all, or have a harsh word or thought for anyone. 

One day I saw her cry, her auntie had passed away at 99 leaving Ms. Norma as the oldest in her family.  I simply held her and let her cry, there really isn't anything else you can say or do when an angel has a moment of crisis.

A few years back I nominated her for Missouri Senior Worker of the Year, no surprise to us she won for St. Louis City. Hubby and I had the honor of escorting her to Jefferson City to accept her award and be celebrated for her amazing contribution to making Missouri a richer, better place.  For two days we got to have fun, celebrate her, eat dinner at the governors mansion and attend a banquet.

Oh she didn't win for the state, that probably had more to do with my writing skills and them not getting to truly know her, than with her obvious qualifications to hold that spot.  But she made me so proud to know her!  She went up there in her beautiful pink dress, with a big bow on her head and she made a speech that only she could have made.  Refusing to cede the mic until she was finished. In true Ms Norma fashion she humbly thanked everyone else for making her look amazing, failing to see that the amazing one is her.

I love that tiny little firebrand, this morning I will stop and pick up a cake and card on my way to work.  I will write a Facebook Post and encourage everyone to wish her a happy birthday!  She is proud of being 77 today, she should be!  I don't think she plans on slowing down for a long time yet.  She still has big plans for helping those around her. 

She doesn't work for me any longer, I switched departments a few years ago, but she always comes to find me with her next idea.  Right now she is nursing one along, and it's a good one, she wants to mentor our teens.  She feels they've been allowed to go down the wrong path and someone needs to turn them around. She is up to the task!  She wants to teach them to be respectful, industrious, to work hard and to be good people.  I would say if anyone can take a group of rebellious, head strong teens and change their mind set it will be Ms Norma!

Pain or no pain, today I get to celebrate an angel!!  I am so excited!!