Austin was walking in the woods, thinking as he looked up at the sky. It had been a stressful day at work. Somedays being the boss wasn’t all it was cracked up to be!
He had always been very good to his employees, for he really did care about them. His business was very successful and he was so proud of everyone’s hard work. They were a great team!
Caring about his employees so much though was what made today so hard. Gina was late again to work. This had made the 3rd time this week. She was one of his best employees, but over the past month her tardiness was building up.
She would profusely apologize, but she never gave him a direct answer as to why she was late.
The rest of the day, she was very quiet as she diligently worked at her desk. Her shoulders were slumped at the end of the day, she looked so weary.
Austin felt an ache in his chest. His Mama had always said that sometimes things weren’t always what they seemed. He knew that Gina was very responsible, so there had to be a serious reason as to why she was late, but why wouldn’t she tell him?
He looked up in the sky and heard the words of his sweet Mama again. He felt like he could almost see her face in the sky. It had been 3 years since she had died, how he would love to chat with her again over a cup of chamomile tea.
He thought of her caring heart and how she was always there to lend a listening ear. His heart warmed as he remembered her and he felt a peace come over him.
The next morning Gina was late again and her face was flushed, when he called her into his office.
“I am so sorry, I know I have been late so many times. I promise I….”
Austin interrupted her. “Gina, You have always been a great employee, but I think we both know this tardiness can’t continue.”
He spoke with tenderness, as his eyes expressed concern. “Please Gina, what is wrong?”
Gina sat down and the story began to pour out. Her husband had lost his job, finances were getting tight, she had taken on a part time night shift position. She thought she could handle it, but it was just too much.
Austin shook his head. “You are amazing!” he said. I don’t know how you have managed like you have!
He was silent for a few moments as he thought and then he spoke.
“Gina, you have been with us for a long time and I do believe you deserve a raise. How much would it take for you to be able to quit your part time job?”
Gina’s eyes widened in shock. She hesitated to speak. Austin named an amount and tears shone in her eyes. “Thank you so much!” she said in a choked voice.
Austin put his arm on her shoulder. “You are very welcome, and now I just have one thing to ask of you.”
Gina wiped her eyes, “What is it sir, I will be very glad to do it!”
“Will you please take the day off and go home and get some sleep?” he asked, with a twinkle in his eye.
“I sure will!” she replied, with a heart of gratitude. Her brown eyes were shining when she walked out of his office.
Austin leaned back in his chair, thinking once more about his Mama. She had worked so very hard to keep him and his two sisters fed and clothed. When he got older he noticed the fatigue in her eyes so many times, but it didn’t stop her from smiling. Didn’t stop her from pouring out her love.
“Thank you Mama,” he whispered, as a few tears fell from his eyes.