My Work Wife

I have two wives, but by no means am I a polygamist.

You know about Renee. She’s the love of my life. The mother of my children. The world’s greatest math teacher. The planner, check-book-balancer and trip navigator. She’s my real wife. And I wouldn’t have it any other way.

What she’s not, however, is my work wife. That’s Sara.

(And, before I tell you more about this whole thing, you should check Sara out here. She’s a new blogger, and her concept is a good one. Check her out.)

That wikipedia even defines work wife is a pretty interesting thing. But again, they define everything.

I’ve been surrounded by women in basically every job I’ve ever had. I find it much easier to work for a woman than a man. Not sure why, just do. Three of my four closest friends from college are women. What can I say, I’m a chick magnet. 😉 But then again, most of you reading this are female, so you already know this, don’t you?!

And this is one of the reasons why Renee is so great — because she understands this. Well, I’m not sure if she totally understands it, but she deals with it — incredibly well, I might add.

I’m also the type that tends not to bring work home with me. I have a 30-minute commute, and I use that time to unwind and let go of all the stuff I just went through during the day. It’s not that I don’t want to talk to Renee about work, I don’t want to talk to anyone about work — when I’m not at work.

I love my job, and I love where I do it. However, there are moments. There are always moments. And it’s an important thing to have a bond with someone that you can gripe with and be frustrated with. Someone that you know gets it and understands the nuances. Someone that is usually going through the same type of situation, just in a different department. Someone who you can gossip with and discuss all the latest rumors with. And, quite honestly, someone you can just completely let go with.

That’s Sara. And it has been for a few years.

I tell her things about work I don’t tell anyone else, and she does the same. We can talk about anyone or anything. We have a secret handshake, and quite frankly, if it’s noon, we’re doin’ it.

We came up with that one planning a lunch. We try to go to lunch every couple of weeks. It helps keep us sane. And I’m a bit OCD about lunch. If I don’t eat at noon, I don’t do well the rest of the day. I’m a little regimented.

So one day, we were setting up lunch and the conversation was like, “so what are we doing for lunch?”

“Oh, we’re doin’ it.”

“Noon, right?”

“Yeah, I mean, if it’s noon, we’re doin’ it.”

You might not find that funny, but we think it’s hysterical. And I suppose that’s all that matters. Lunch with Sara is always a great time. We’ve talked funny stuff, serious stuff and funny and serious stuff. Either way, it’s always fun.

The last lunch we had was a perfect example of how we know each other at work. I was having a relatively bad day. I was being questioned about something by the president. And I was right, but in order to appease him, it was going to take me about four to five hours of (unnecessary) work.

I wasn’t upset. I wasn’t frustrated. I wasn’t ticked off. I was pissed. Borderline livid.

Sara sensed it immediately, realizing what state I was in. She’s seen me in all of the above moods, but she knew this one had really set me off. And she was right. She then made it her mission to cheer me up. And it worked. She did it. And she did it well.

Sara and I call a really great lunch a ‘classic’ — for one reason or another. This was definitely a classic. It had a ton of emotion in it, particularly when, after building me up, she broke the news that she was taking another job. Not a promotion or swith here. Another job. As in another place.

My work wife was leaving me. Oh the drama.

Not so. More happiness. She’s getting a promotion, a significant salary increase and a much shorter commute. She wrestled with this, and it was important for her to talk about it with me. That’s what the relationship is about. We went from me being pissed, to us laughing and making fun of our incompetent waitress to the seriousness of a job change.

Our lunches have touched on everything over time. Discussions about life, death and everything in between. A job change was just another topic for us to tackle.

Sara wanted my opinion and I gave it to her. First and foremost, you look out for number one. She did. Do I wish that she was staying? Of course I do. But she’s doing the best for her. That’s what matters. To me. And, most importantly, to her.

And we’ll be fine. The beauty of this relationship is that while it’s steeped in work, it’s gone beyond that.

I may be losing my work wife, but I am forever keeping a friend.



13 Comments on “My Work Wife”

  1. Molly says:

    That’s what makes you such a good friend — because you get it and you care.

  2. Barb says:

    You are a great friend….and leave imprints on people and their hearts….. The question is…. will there ever be another work wife?

  3. Anna says:

    And she is losing a great work husband, too.

  4. […] 11, 2008 In honor of my work husband, who managed to make me cry today, here are my five very favorite things about […]

  5. Sara says:

    And I can only think of five nice things to say about you…

  6. JenBun says:

    Work spouses are important… but forever friends? That says it all… 🙂

  7. Oh my, this made me cry! you are awesome!

  8. elizabethews says:

    Um, gotta say, I’m a little jealous 😉

  9. Stephanie says:

    I think it’s so great that you have (had?) someone at work that you connected with so well. Since all of my coworkers are based in a country around the world, I’m quite jealous of the bond you share – and having someone to complain to when the going gets rough!

  10. […] a classic lunch with the aforementioned work wife yesterday. It’s part one of our barnstorming two-lunch goodbye. We went to […]

  11. […] outsider on the very life you are living.  I was sitting at a desk laughing with a  friend when my work husband happened to pop by.  We talked and we joked and we laughed and I looked around knowing that that […]

  12. Such a great post! This is the first time I’ve ever read your blog. I discovered it by searching for “work wife” on Google. I will be back for more content. I just wrote a blog entry on work wives, and I linked to this wonderful post.

  13. ironmadonna says:

    Are you all kidding me???..How convenient he never talks about work at home, never has to bring up the work wife in conversation with the true wife…Trust me when I tell you the relationship almost never ends when the loyal work wife/spouse moves on..It continues long afterward and spills into the true marriage..THAT is NOT keeping work at work..You are not a true friend, you could’ve accomplished the same basic relationship with another male..Brother, I though I’d heard it all…Work spouses are not ok…they share a very intimate relationship with one another which is often more time consuming than a true marriage..any married couple who feels this type of relationship is harmless, necessary and/or acceptable, will be the couple who is burned by it…

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