I have a few friends who knit and blog and we've decided to embark on a blog project that has nothing to do with knitting. We're going to take turns coming up with a topic every Thursday and we each have to blog about it by the end of that day and post links to each other's blogs so that people can see our different perspectives on the same topic.
Here are the other blogs:
Froggie Knits Like Crazy
The first topic, which I chose, is "My most unexpected friendship." This has nothing to do with the method in which we made friends, but more about the nature of the friendship itself or about the people involved.
I have had several jobs over the last 10 years. At all jobs, my boss was truly my superior and a role I had to work under and respect. I've gotten along with some bosses and just tolerated others till I could find something better or until the job ended altogether. I got along really well with one manager at a past job and we'd have "tea talks" every morning, but he wasn't directly my superior, so it doesn't count the same way.
When I was living in NJ, I was hired for a job doing part-time medical billing for a privately owned company. It was a new field for me, but I just needed strong typing skills and an eye for detail. My bosses were a husband and wife team that owned the company. I originally thought I'd just be working for the husband and had the most interaction with him for a while. He was very nice, but we mainly talked about work-related stuff. I had limited work interaction with the wife when I started out, but I'd see her at the end of my training shift and we'd talk when we had the chance. She and I were both due with our babies around the same time, so we had that common bond. The couple was Orthodox, so we also had some things in common on that end. (I'm Modern Orthodox, so there were some things I did on a more secular level, but we still could relate on a lot of topics.) As I continued to work for them, I'd come by to drop off papers (I was doing most of the work from home) and would end up chatting with the wife for an hour or so. Eventually, I brought my kids over to play with their kids. Especially since our babies were 2 weeks apart. During the first summer that I worked for them, they invited us for a Shabbos meal while we were checking out their neighborhood as a potential community for us to settle into. My husband had a lot to talk about with my male boss and our kids enjoyed playing together.
Early last year, I decided to take on some more responsibilities with my job, which required me to work at their house once a week. I enjoyed this time because I could do my work and talk with the wife the whole time, when she wasn't on phone calls.
The whole job overall was a great arrangement in terms of flexibility. We'd also get gifts for each others' kids on birthdays and holidays and gave each other shalach manot last year for Purim. Nothing was expected on either end, but we enjoyed being able to share in such special occasions and holidays.
When we decided officially to move to MD, telling my bosses was one of the hardest things ever, harder than telling my friends and acquaintances or even my older son's teachers. This was because I enjoyed working for them and I had formed such a special connection with the wife. I gave them plenty of time to find someone new before I left and even helped them look for new employees on my own time. I still stay in touch with the wife and we share the latest news in our lives and in our families' lives. When I was going through the hiring process for my new job, she gave them an amazing referral that completely sealed the deal. She even shared with me what she told them and it was incredibly sweet. We had a great professional relationship aside from our friendship. Both she and her husband trusted me and it motivated me to do my best. I hope we'll continue to stay in touch, as this is a special friendship that I still cherish. I also hope that anyone who works for them currently or in the future will realize how wonderful their bosses are and will want to work as diligently as I did to continue to help their business thrive.
The reason this friendship is unexpected is because I never expected to be close friends with anyone I worked for and I am very happy that this is the opportunity I had to establish such a friendship.