I didn’t want you, I wanted someone ‘new’

So, I recently did like a double shift at work where it was basically 10 hours of me working. Now, as you may know, this is pretty rough when your job is massage and I will certainly admit it, massage is basically a form of manual labor. It’s very tough, you basically take your hands off the client for maybe 5 minutes altogether for draping and flipping and all that, but besides that your hands are on them for a full 60 minutes. I did this really long shift because they asked me to stay for a late appointment that was in the books when this one therapist was working but she left so that left this appointment without a massage therapist.

I told them I would stay, so stay I did. And, I stayed with being sick, my voice being funked up, my nose running/stuffy all day long, a bad sinus headache, and basically feeling like crap. I spent my massages earlier in the day with my head in my sleeve praying my nose would stop running. After the massage I’d run into one of the open rooms, blow my nose as hard as I could, and wash my hands before my client came out.

I was pretty miserable, yet when I was open I did all the cleaning I could do and kept myself busy. There was laundry to be folded so I did that, and I eventually ended up cleaning the microwave because I was so bored.

The client arrived finally and she’s seen me before. I saw her sitting out there, made sure my nose was blown, hands washed, and I was as presentable as I could be with being sick. I called her by her name, showed up in my doorway, and she gives me this crestfallen face. She says to me, “Oh, well, I didn’t want to get a massage by you. I wanted to try someone new. Why are you here?” pretty much said this to me, and more, and I just stare at her absolutely dumbfounded.

Oh, wow, huh … you kind of have me today because the therapist who was going to do your massage left us for another job. My managers asked me to cover your massage so I said yes, and, well … here I am. I’m sorry you must have me.

I didn’t know what to say. I was embarrassed, and offended, and I don’t know if I’ve ever felt that horrible in a long time. I don’t know why anyone would say that to me, especially when I’m doing both you, and my work, a favor staying 10 hours to wait for your massage when I’m sick and I’d much rather be home sleeping right now. I explained to her the situation why I was there and she still kept going on about it. After the massage I basically shut everything down and went home as quickly as I could.  I’ve never, ever, had a client of mine who has seen me not be happy to see me be their therapist and I guess this shows me this can happen. I still kind of wanted to bury my head in a hole after that.

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