I’m a bank teller.
I deal with people every day. Some people I see more often and create relationships with, others come and go.
At my old job, a lady used to come in every other Friday to get some grocery money and money to pay the man that does her yardwork.
85 years old when I met her, she was still driving around and doing things on her own. By the time she was 86, her daughter was driving her around and by 87 an assisted living facility shuttle would bring her by.
From the first day I met her, she’d hold my hand as I did her transaction. I’d do the entire thing one handed because she’d grasp my hand with both of hers and just smile. Her hands were always cold, but she’d always hold on and smile as we talked about her last two weeks away from me. I absolutely adored this woman because she was so sweet and reminded me so much of my own grandfather. He’d hold my hand while we talked too.
Fast forward to now, I work at a different bank inside a grocery store. I see her outside looking around as if she were lost. We made eye contact, I waved and run out to say hi. She grabs my hand, smiles big and asks me if I’ve seen her daughter. - I say no, I haven’t seen Carol around…
She then asks me if I know her. My heart dropped a little. I said of course, and reminded her of our conversations and laughs at the old bank. She said oh those sound like good times, but I’ve lost all my short term memory. You look awfully familiar but I just don’t remember and I’m so sorry.
She still held and squeezed my hands, smiled and spoke to me just as I remembered. I helped her find her daughter who thanked me and caught up with me for a quick second before i was running back to work.
I think about all the relationships I’ve come across, the memories I’ve made. I worry about death, and losing everything but being alive and losing all these things could be just as bad.
I’ll go about my days thinking about her and how a simple sweet smile could brighten my day, it sucks knowing that she won’t be able to do the same with the memories and experiences she’s had.