As you read this, my wife, Lana, is working her last day. She is retiring today. She’s been an office manager for a dental office since 1993 and worked in the dental or medical field for several wonderful people over many years.
Lana worked in other fields of business as well and that is how we met. She was hired in 1980 by me as my secretary in Marion, Illinois when I worked for a national company. She was the most efficient, pleasant, professional member of any staff in any office I would ever come in contact with in my life. The fact that I would fall in love with her and marry her a year later had nothing to do with those facts. She was incredible in an office environment and still is today.
Since it was announced she was going to retire, patients have been streaming in to say their good-byes. Other referring doctors who have only talked to her on the phone or have seen her a few times have sent her flowers, gifts, and notes of well wishes. She has been overwhelmed with the showing of love. “I had no idea, Keith.”
Are you kidding me? If you knew her, you would know why she is getting this attention. She recently asked me if she was doing the right thing. “Should I hang it up now or work longer? I’ve got mixed feelings. I’m going to miss the patients and the people I work with so much.”
“They’re five minutes away. Pop in and say hi. You know if it is time or not.”
She’s getting the attention because they love her. They appreciate the attention she gives them, the professionalism she gives them that is lacking so much today. They appreciate the attention to detail. They appreciate the little things she remembers about them and their families. As far as the office personnel, they appreciate how well she runs the office and keeps it running smoothly. The doctor knows she pays for herself.
What is she going to do now? She certainly is not going to sit at home and eat bon-bons and watch soap operas. She has plans for crafts, helping me with my business, getting into an exercise routine, pestering the grandkids and me more, and also volunteering quite a bit.
I never had to peek into her office to know how it was run. I knew. The people around you make you look good or bad. Lana made me look excellent in Marion, Illinois and has made everyone around her better every single day.
Every single day, for over 35 years, Lana has made me look good, both professionally and personally, better than I should. I get why they love and respect her. I am so blessed to be her husband. The best thing I ever did was hire her. I got a ring with the application. No one else could tolerate my sense of humor so well. She puts me in my place, in a loving way, of course.
Sweetie, congrats for your outstanding career. I’m glad I was with you for most of it. Thanks for tolerating me the way you do. I look forward to the next phase of our life together. I love you so very much. I’ll be there when you get home. Where do you want to go for dinner? (Right now she’s saying, “Of course I’m not cooking on my last day of work.”) Anywhere you want to do is good for me and then wine after that. This has got to be worth some points.
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