It’s now after midnight on a Saturday night. I left work over eight hours ago after a long day at work, and I can’t sleep because I can’t stop thinking about Deborah and Ted.
Late in the afternoon, a crazy storm blew through DFW. It was one of those once-a-summer Texas storms with very strong winds and sideways rain right in the middle of the busiest part of our biggest day of the week. Right at the peak of the storm, when all you could do was stand and watch in awe at how intense it was, I noticed someone else was doing the same thing as I was. She was very, very skinny and had a clean, bald head, and wore the same wide-eyed look on her face as I did. I sidled up to her and commented on the craziness before us. She said to me, “I don’t care. My boyfriend is smiling.” I asked her what she meant, and she unloaded her story on me. She told me that she is in chemotherapy with a particularly aggressive form of cancer, and that until today she couldn’t remember the last time her boyfriend had smiled for an extended period of time. She told me all about her treatments and the heartache and the tears they had shed. She asked about my wife and son and demanded to see pictures of them and made me promise that I would hug them specifically for her when I got home. She took me over to meet Ted, her boyfriend. Sure enough, he was still smiling. I introduced myself and talked to the both of them while we waited out the storm. Before I moved on, I put my card in his hand and insisted that he let me know next time they are coming out. I shook Tim’s hand, and Deborah pulled me in for a long hug and thanked me again for such a great day.
I immediately headed to the office (which was thankfully empty), found a hidden corner, and sat on the floor and had a good cry. All of us have been touched by this horrible disease, and Deborah made a tremendous impact on me. They were so grateful for such a beautiful day at Topgolf, and I will never forget them. We always talk about how much fun our jobs are, but it’s days like this that really remind me of the impact we have on our guests each day.
I can’t wait to see Deborah and Tim again. I don’t even care if it rains.