Next Step Therapy Blog: ‘Parting Is Such Sweet Sorrow’

Tracy 1Next Step Therapy, submitted the following article – “Parting Is Such Sweet Sorrow.”

Over the years, there have been a lot of “firsts” for me as the owner of Next Step Therapy, Inc. The first month we made a profit; the first time I had to hire outside of my circle; the first time someone called US and wanted to contract with US; the first time one of our staff had a baby; the first time I had to discipline an employee; the first time I had to fire somebody; the first time I walked into our building in Seneca and saw all of the possibilities. The first time I had to write a corporate check for federal taxes for $56,000.00 and thought I would have a stroke. Many, many firsts, both good and bad, over the past eight-plus years, and each of them a learning experience.

At Next Step, we have had another “first,” and I, along with the rest of the staff, are finding it bittersweet. We are experiencing our first retirement. We have been open long enough to actually have an employee officially retire from our employ.

On the one hand, I am so humbled that a wonderful person CHOSE to work their last eight years with our company. Katie Kahle has been an exemplary employee. As an older professional, Katie has done a great deal of training and mentoring new staff. We’ve come to rely on her quiet, calm demeanor. The kids that she provides therapy for see her as a grandma, and the families of those kids know her as a reliable source of comfort and knowledge. In eight years of employment, there has never been a complaint about Katie. I am truly sad to see her go.

On the other hand, Katie has worked hard, all of her life, and she deserves this. It is time. Early Intervention requires sitting on the floor with the kids, and I’m telling you, it gets harder every year to get yourself back up off the floor. When the two year old has to help you up, or asks, “What was that?” when your knee cracks like a gunshot, it’s probably time to think about packing it in. Katie is tired of driving through blizzards and sliding sideways down the hills required to get to these kids houses, and I don’t blame her a bit.

Katie has been given an opportunity to go live with her daughter and son-in-law to help them with a new venture. She gets to move south! Nice weather nearly year round! Being outside nearly year round! Heck, I want to go.

We had a retirement dinner for Katie. We gave her a well-deserved sendoff. There were drinks, dinner, cake, decorations, speeches, and gifts. And tears. Many, many tears. Why is it so hard to say goodbye to someone who is merely moving away? Between phones and email and Facebook, we can all stay in touch, easily. So why is it so hard?

I have a better understanding today of that saying, “Parting is such sweet sorrow.” I get it now. I’m so happy for her, but really sad for all of us. Good luck Katie. We wish you nothing but happiness – and in Next Step terminology, we wish you rainbows and glitter. Tremendous amounts of glitter!


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