Yesterday I was taking my youngest one to Junior Kindergarten just after noon for the first day back after their two week Christmas break when I saw my neighbour for the first time since Christmas day when I popped over to wish a Merry Christmas. He looked fine and the family was opening up gifts and getting the turkey in the oven.
He is a Bar Manager at a local corporate restaurant so when I saw him yesterday he looked as thin as a rake. As he was walking by me , I blurted out his name to get his attention and he heard , so he came over to say hello.
In his early 40’s , I asked him how he was doing when he shocked me by saying he had to call 911 the other day as he was having a panic attack driving home one night and the emergency team thought he was having a stroke. That is when he added Steve I am all stressed out , I cannot relax. It was naturally busy at work and with 3 young children at home and a wife that doesn’t work the burden is obviously weighing on his shoulders. The boss told him to take a few days off and he was going back last night. But it appeared he had or was on the verge of a nervous breakdown. If he is unable to work for any length of time though his family is going to have a tough time getting by for sure.
Seeing this happen to someone who is in the restaurant industry for me really hits home. He is a manager who doesn’t get paid enough and works far too many hours and as you get a bit on in years it becomes a bit too much. If you are unable to do the job then they will find the exit door for you. I hope that it was just a temporary thing with the holidays and all the other stuff that takes place during the season that caused this and he is back to normal soon.
Working long shifts and going to meetings on your day off is tiresome especially when it seems you come home and there is more stuff to do on top of all that.
If I can suggest anything at all for those who feel like they want to wait on tables their whole life is make sure you get a nap once in a while and take time to be alone. Even if you are married with kids find that time to be alone as that will keep you from losing control. We serve people all the time and put up with a lot and we deserve that time to ourselves.
I think my friend probably just needs to be alone and sleep for about a day and he will be fixed up. He is peopled out at work and familied out at home.
Just tell people around you that you need a nap and to be by yourself. Even if it is just reading a book or watching a DVD or something. Don’t worry about keeping the house clean or doing the laundry or whatever it is you feel like you have to do. It can wait!
Take time out for yourself and this will make work and family go a lot smoother and your mind and body will function normally.