I've had a picture on my desk of Cynthia's and Cara's hands ever since I started back at work after Cara's death. I've only received about 3 or 4 comments on the picture in that time.
Yesterday afternoon, a co-worker who has never been at my desk walks by...
"Is that a picture of your wife, she's so cute!" she says.
"Thanks, yes she is."
"And what is that?"
"That's a picture of my daughter, who died last year."
"Oh. What happened?"
"She was stillborn when my wife was 38 weeks pregnant."
"Oh. I don't mean to be gross but my sister had that happen and her baby's fingernails looked the same way."
After saying this, she turned and walked away.
This very brief conversation left me speechless. Why point that out? Why not just say "I'm sorry." I'm trying to give her the benefit of the doubt. Maybe she was surprised by my picture. Maybe she got nervous.
Either way, it's just another confirmation that the office environment is a terrible place to grieve. Sorry, I just had to vent.