Warning: This post will likely be incredibly depressing.
Encouragement: You should still read on.
How do you know when it’s going to be a tough day at work? When you get a text and phone call from your editor the night before with a full list of things to do.
How do you know that you are too emotional? When you cry after every interview.
How do you cope with said emotions? Probably you should do something productive, but I choose to eat … a lot.
There was a family of seven killed Saturday night in a plane crash, so of course first thing Monday I was on it. Driving to the businesses the mom and dad owned, talking with teachers and daycare workers of the children.
I’ve done this before, but not like this. Not when there’s a mom and dad and five young children killed in the same accident. Not when the oldest child is the only survivor.
I went to the daycare the mother owned and spoke with the teachers. My heart broke when a boy no older than 4 came up to one of them and asked, “Is Miss Terresa in heaven now?”
The teachers were composed for most of their interviews. But when I asked how they were coping their eyes swelled up with tears and their voices cracked.
The sadness seeped into me. I closed the door to my car after the interviews and tears fell down my face. Tears for the lives lost. Tears for those left behind. Tears because this is what happens in real life.
Real life is the worst.
After six chicken minis, a diet coke and a promise that I would treat myself to macaroni and cheese for lunch, I regained my composure.
I know I’ve written about this before and talked about how I think I’m getting better at it. But the truth is I will never get used to doing this.
Hours after my interviews, I’m still finding it hard not to cry.