I read a quote once that said, “Working together makes us co-workers, but spending so many hours together and sharing our good times and bad times with each other makes us friends, friends who stand by each other…” (Wonderful Coworker).
My colleagues and I work as Telecommunication Specialists for the Department of Public Safety at the Medical University of South Carolina.
For us, and like much of the rest of the world, the last few years have been challenging in part due to the Coronavirus. Unlike many, we as dispatchers were unable to work from home; instead, we held the line in the battle with COVID-19 as exposure numbers rose and the death toll increased. And though some days we feel invincible, we are not immune. Our small office of nine dispatchers learned first-hand of the grueling toll that comes along with a COVID-19 diagnosis when several staff members were exposed.
Bruised, but not broken. Sonya, Tanya, Miranda, and I became a phone tree. We developed our version of Door Dash. We became Dispatch-Dash! We found a way to drop off everything from care packages, food, toiletries, prescriptions, and even homemade elderberry elixirs. Moreover, this bond that was cemented during COVID did not end. Together we have had the pleasure of clapping the loudest for each other during graduations, the birth of grandchildren, birthdays, new businesses, career highs and so, so, so much more.
And when good times became dark times: we’ve held hands at funerals, wiped tears during the loss of loved ones, covered shifts when illness or fatigue struck, and prayed intercessory when each other’s words seem to fail.
Work will always remain work, but gaining a group of people who will not only stand alongside you on the good days but also show up in full force for you on the rough days is admirable.