Friday, March 13, 2009

It's An Emotional Roller Coaster...

On Monday we sent out an e-mail to our customers that our little homeschool bookstore was closing. It was such a hard thing to hit that "send" button and wait to see what the response was going to be. Within minutes of the notice going out, the phone started ringing and people were openly crying with me over the phone and saying how much they love us and how much we are going to be missed.

When my boss called that morning, I told him (and almost cried) about how much love and support we were being shown. I knew if was going to be rough, I just had no idea how rough. When he called towards the end of the day, I was quite a bit less teary. The day had been wild. People came in and shopped like wild. I felt like a good portion of our inventory had already been wiped clean. This is a good thing because everything must go.

What is hard to maintain without sounding phony is the telling of how we feel about it when people come in. Someone will walk in and they give you that look - full of sympathy and usually with the head tilt (remember that episode of "Friends" with Tom Selleck?). "How are you doing? You okay?" And then we usually respond with the details of how the economy has been and how hard this is going to be and what a tremendous loss to the homeschool community this is going to be. And you know what? I do mean each and every word of it but after saying it 15 times a day, I feel like a fraud! I don't know why but I just do.

I am devastated by this turn of events. I am heartbroken that it had to come to this. I am shocked at the attitude of some people who have only come in to pick over the carcass of our little store so that they can save 20% when they have not supported the store in five years!!! It's hard to greet those people with a smile. I go in in the morning and I am sad as I walk around and see how much is gone. I get teary when I talk with the first few people of the day. But by mid-afternoon when the store is packed with people that I do not know and the pace if frenetic, I just have to force myself to keep moving. To keep smiling. By the time I get home, I want to be alone and not talk to anyone. Hard to imagine that a little "chatty Cathy" like myself would feel that way but I do.

Today is my day off and I am going to cherish it. Michael is at school, Nick will be at work...but it is raining and so my hubby will be home with me. He does NOT let me have quiet time. He will want to talk and know what I am doing and while all that is sweet and I may have to "convince" him to take me on a lunch date. I kind of would have preferred the ultimate quiet time.

But alas, not today.


1 comment:

Sherry said...

Oh Stacy, I'm crying with you. When I read the announcement I felt like I had lost my best friend. I am definitely going to feel a loss without you ladies. I hope we can keep in contact. God Bless you for always being there when I needed help and asked a million questions. I am surely going to miss you.