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Placing the handset back to its place, the voices in Angie’s mind were arguing actively. She could feel the tension all over her body. Her heart was beating very fast. Her hands were shaking. Her eyebrows were frowning. The pain that she used to feel in her shoulders when she used to be in her former position, started to move back slowly from her shoulders up to her neck. Since she moved to her new position, she has been dreading those short but awful phone calls filled with negative energy, hate and deadly vibes. She used to feel after these phone calls, that she was falling apart, that her ideas didn’t matter, that all her work was and has been passing unnoticed throughout all these years that she has been working at the Beautiful University of Heaven, that no matter how perfect or how bad her job is, it passed unnoticed. Some people call these feelings “appreciation”, others call them “gratitude”, and others don’t bother with names or definitions. Her former boss never knew about these words-feelings and would probably never know. Some people can settle for a life devoid of any excellence but not Angie. Some people can spend 30 years in an unrewarding job on all levels- especially on the emotional and financial levels- but not Angie. Some people can keep dragging themselves to a job that they loathe on a daily basis until their retirement telling themselves lies about their future, their happiness, their life and their destiny, but not Angie.

She knew that life is too short, that people move on, that things don’t really matter, that things change constantly, that every person is replacable, that the show must go on. She also knew – based on a friend suggestion – to set her expectations very low or to simply to avoid having expectations. But she also knew that things are tasteless and shapeless if they are lacking any expectations.

The phone call was from Sigara, the young girl who replaced Angie in her former post. Although Sigara was sweet and polite, Angie couldn’t help but feel all the hate and all the anger channeled through her voice.  The tone of her voice sent Angie untold reproaches. Sigara was calling to ask about a device belonging to the office and she didn’t say things like: “Do you recall x device? I am looking for it, but I don’t know where it is. Can you help me?” instead she said : “Where did you put this x device?” as if she was accusing Angie of hiding things. And although Angie tried to assemble all her patience, she couldn’t help but tell her that it has been almost 6 months since she left that department and that she no longer remembers the emplacement of things in that office. For God Sake, what do those people do in this institution? Don’t they at least spend a few hours exploring and getting acquainted with the items they have in their offices? Don’t they feel “responsible” for things they are asked to pay attention to ? What would have happened if Angie had accepted a job offer in Hell for example? Would they call her to Hell to ask about this or that item? Is such a behavior acceptable? if yes, to whom is it acceptable? (I know a friend who would argue that Angie is making a big deal out of a tiny incident, and I also know that this friend would reproach Angie to be such a big child. To this friend, I hope one day he will recognize himself, I say, thank you for your time, for your patience, for listening to Angie’s complaints, and to do exactly the opposite of what she was hoping you would do. Don’t you realize dear friend that this is Angie’s point of view? Don’t  you realize that she is only telling you about these incidents to ask for your moral support?) 

What was dreadfully upsetting for Angie was the fact that she never hid anything. She always worked in a way to keep everything clear, well placed and well seen. But it seems that all her work has been labeled as “unclear”, “unnoticed”, “uninteresting”, “unnecessary”…

The voices in Angie’s head advised her to calm down, although it wasn’t easy. One of them argued that she needed to solve some unclear businesses within herself and that people can’t disturb her if she doesn’t allow them to do that. Another voice wanted to scream : “Come on, do you actually believe in invisible buttons and in people pushing these buttons? And for God sake, do you actually believe that everything is within you? That you can choose to act or to react? Are you sure everything is a projection of your inner world? Wake up!!!”

(Thank you for reading 🙂

by Zeina Gabriel