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Death of a family member

Discussion in 'Anything goes' started by jakewriter82, Jun 17, 2007.

  1. dog428

    dog428 Active Member

    Way I look at it: If the people at the paper where I have a job interview don't understand or can't wait, to hell with them. I wouldn't want to work there.

    And if the people I'm working for can't make it a couple of days without me in FREAKING JUNE, they need to seriously evaluate they're management skills.

    I guess I've been lucky, but I've never -- not in any job I've ever held -- worked for people as cold and insensitive as some of the bosses talked about here. It's probably a good thing, because had some asshole made it clear to me that they couldn't find a replacement to cover an event after I informed them my grandmother had just died, my reply, I'm certain, would've been "Well, you're fucked then, ain't ya?" (Don't misunderstand me, J_D, I'm not questioning your decision or anything else. You were pressured -- likely by someone who should've known better and should feel far worse about it than you do. That person was the dickhead in this story, not you.)

    I guess I've been pretty lucky.
  2. writing irish

    writing irish Active Member

    Ding ding ding. Any sports department that is depending on someone that isn't even part of the organization yet to get through June, you gotta wonder.
  3. Frank_Ridgeway

    Frank_Ridgeway Well-Known Member

    I understand worrying about the timing. I was with my dad for all but the final two days of the last two weeks of his life. Getting on that plane to come home was the hardest thing I've ever done, but he had rallied so many times that I really couldn't tell my boss with any assurance that this was it, I needed a couple more days, nor did I want my dad to think that I had given up on his ability to rally once more, that the death watch had begun. I pretty much knew I was saying goodbye, and it was no surprise when I had to fly back two days later -- I left the suit at my parents' house.

    A friend in the business had told me maybe a year earlier that it would be normal to feel some guilt about living so far from a loved one who was dying, or not being there for the final day, but that it would be irrational guilt -- we have our own lives and no parent would want us to give that up, but when he's gone there would be guilt nonetheless, but don't be consumed by it -- you can't plan when it's going to happen. It was good advice. Because I have a very understanding wife, virtually all my vacation and personal days for three years were spent visiting my dad, and each time I left I believed it was the last time I'd see him alive. But short of quitting my job and moving there, I had done all I could do to spend as much time with him as possible. But when I booked that final trip I really had no idea whether I'd be too late or too soon. It's a guess, and it's all we can do.
  4. Dirk Legume

    Dirk Legume Active Member

    Re: Bad bosses and bereavement.

    My mother died on a Thursday night aobut three hours from where I lived. Per her wishes the funeral was held as quickly as possible, Sunday afternoon.

    My boss called on Saturday to see how things were and when I said the funeral was Sunday afternoon, there was a pause and then "So we'll see you Monday then?" I told him I would need a couple more days to clean up loose ends and he said "but it's over Sunday with the funeral, why can't you work Monday?"

    It has been six years and it still ticks me off.
  5. Ace

    Ace Well-Known Member

    Mrs. Ace just started a new job about 1,000 miles from home when her grandmother died.

    It would have been her first day at work and she felt too awkward about asking for those days off and -- of course -- her family was understanding and supportive.

    But she still regrets not going to the funeral 20 years later.

    As a boss, she doesn't hesitate to tell people that family comes first.
  6. leo1

    leo1 Active Member

    sometimes there is no good answer but i like the advice to think about what grandpa would want you to do. don't make up the answer. what would he really want? like shotglass (i think) said above, in some families going to the funeral or wake is the thing. to others, a person who has shown love and support while the person was LIVING has made his peace.

    i have a similar situation except i have no boss. three weeks ago tomorrow i took my grandpa in to the ER. i am the only relative who lives nearby; others are in flying distance. we thought he had a stroke. three days later he had a craniotomy to remove a brain tumor. the tumor was malignant and only 25 percent could be removed. the cancer has spread. there is no cure. he is dying. the doctors gave him anywhere from three to eight months to live. in the ensuing 10 days he was in and out of ICU and the end look imminent. now, however, he is in hospice, but he's getting discharged and sent home tomorrow. although there is no cure, the swelling has gone down and he appears (emphasis on 'appears') 1,000 times better than on the day i took him in to the ER. lots of family flew in to be with him of course.

    that said, the problem from my personal view is that this summer i am studying for the bar exam, which is the most important test of my life. i've spent a ton of time with gramps over the past few weeks. this situation hit me hard and for the first week or so i could barely focus on studying. but i was lucky enough to go to law school an hour away from him, the only time in my life i've ever lived in the game town as my grandparents, so i spent a lot of time with him (and grandma) over the past three years. his condition is definitely weighing on me and distracting me.

    at first i felt incredibly selfish for even thinking about myself and the bar exam. it made me feel shitty that i even considered my own problems. but i am lucky because every single person in my family has told me not to worry about gramps, that i need to focus on the bar exam as my first priority. of course i'll still worry about grandpa but there is nothing i can do other than sit with him and be with him.

    i know my grandpa well. he'd be pissed at me if he heard i failed the bar exam because i was worrying about him or sitting in his hospital room instead of studying. so for now, he's stable and i don't have to worry as much. but his death is imminent; it could happen suddenly any time or it could be a slow deterioration. no one can do anything but make him comfortable. so i'm focusing on the bar exam while also going to see gramps as often as possible on nights and weekends but it's tough. of course i'm also thinking about the prospect of him dying days before the bar exam but i will cross that bridge when i come to it.
  7. Mighty_Wingman

    Mighty_Wingman Active Member

    This is unbelievable. Jesus. Outrageous. I'm sorry, man.

    I'm grateful I still have both of my parents in good health, and I'm hopeful if something ever happens -- God forbid -- I won't work for a worthless fuck like that guy.

    My first day at my first full-time job was the day after my grandmother's funeral in another state. I was too stupid even to ask anyone at my new office if I could have started a day or two later...Instead, like a moron, I left almost immediately after the funeral and drove all the way to my new home. Showed up early the next day and never mentioned my grandmother's funeral to anyone...and I've felt bad about it ever since.

    When my last grandparent died last year, though, my curre t bosses were very, very supportive. This grandmother -- I was closest to her...she and my grandfather raised me for several years in my childhood -- passed away on a Friday night before the BCS school I cover played one of its big rivals. Two top-6 teams at the time, with the conference on the line.

    My SE never hesitated. Sent me home -- three states away -- and told me to stay as long as I had to. I ended up taking five days in the middle of a very busy football season, though he did e-mail me some quotes and I wrote a couple stories. The SE has pissed me off many times since then, but I'll always be grateful for what he did for me that time.
  8. markvid

    markvid Guest

    That's just wrong. If you left that shop since, I hope you let him know on the way out.
    I know I've posted this before, but I'll do it again.
    My father died near the end of the Salt Lake Olympics. It was a long term situation, so it was more of a relief to all of us that his suffering was over. We knew he was going to be cremated, so I never went home, and my family waited so we could spread his ashes. He died on a Wednesday morning, my venue was finished on Friday, I traveled home Saturday. I do regret not going home at times, but I did say what I wanted to tell him just before I left for Salt Lake, just in case. He also instilled in me a work ethic that I believe he would have been telling me, don't go home, job is not done yet. Also, I prefer to remember him the way I saw him last. At home, eyes open, peaceful, not laying on a gurney in a funeral home as the rest of my family had to endure before he was taken to the crematorium.
  9. shockey

    shockey Active Member

    any supervisor worth a damn tells an employee dealing with a death/funeral, "take as long as you need."

    sentiments like these are NEVER forgotten. just like opposite sentiments are NEVER forgotten.
  10. jakewriter82

    jakewriter82 Active Member

    Well, my grandpa died last night at about 10. Maybe it's my finding coincidences where none exist, but before I went to bed I was listening to my Ipod and had it on shuffle and the third or fourth song it chose, one I didn't even know was on there..was Hideaway by CCR. Not sure if anyone's heard it but here's the lyrics...

    What’s that you say?
    We’re all bound for the graveyard;
    Oooh, I wish you well.
    Think it’s gonna rain,
    Oh, what’s the diff’rence,
    Is there some way I can help?

    ’cause you know, I’m gonna miss you
    When you’re gone, oh, lord,
    Wish I could hideaway

    Hold on, give yourself a chance,
    I can hear the leavin’ train.

    All aboard! goodbye, goodbye, goodbye!
    Oooh, I wish you well.
    See you soon, maybe tomorrow.
    You can never tell;

    Cause you know, I’m gonna miss you
    When you’re gone, oh,
    Wish I could hideaway"

    Today I told my editor he wasn't doing well and she's been very supportive. I'm going to take a few days before my interview and I guess they're going to schedule the funeral on Wednesday if they can. I told my dad I'd be there whenever they scheduled it. If I am able to go it's it's going to be difficult getting into the frame of mind for a job interview the day after the funeral.
    I didn't think it'd hit me as hard because I knew it was coming, but it does.
  11. shotglass

    shotglass Guest

    May he RIP, jake. Our thoughts are with you, man.
  12. Johnny Dangerously

    Johnny Dangerously Well-Known Member

    Hang in there. This board has a lot of good people who have been there, and I'm sure they're wishing you and your family the best and sending good thoughts.
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