When your entire office adds up to fifteen people, you tend to get very close to the people who work with you. So last days at Purplemango are a concoction of thank-you’s, tear soaked tissues, hand-drawn cards and a chorus of “Cheers!”. While every good-bye feels like my heart went through a spin-cycle in the washing machine, there’s things that I’ve learned with each person leaving.

1. How to freeze a moment

When you know that your days with a certain person are coming to an end you start watching the dates race away in absolute bewilderment. You want so much more of the person and there is lesser and lesser time left. However, there is still one thing you can do and that is to freeze moments in time. I learned this particular trick from a little birdie who has flown away to London. We were in the middle of a room with loud music, louder clothes, overflowing alcohol and crazy dancing. She suddenly held my hand and said, “Resh, close your eyes, let’s freeze this. I’m so happy now, we should freeze this!” There were a gazillion things happening at the same time and I’ve managed to save every inch of it into one mesmerizing mental time capsule.

2. It’s important to say Good-bye with a smile

It’s very important to think of the picture the person leaving will take with them. You want it to be good, because it won’t just be on their phones, it will stay on in their memories and that needs to be special. I try to remember a funny story, so everyone has something to laugh about. While you’re worrying about coping with your own situation, the person leaving is beginning a new journey of their own. It’s a good time to remember how they began their journey with Purplemango and where they are now; as professionals and as people. Sure the stories are going to stir up a lot of emotions, but it’s important to remember to seal your sadness with a smile.

3. You’ll find them again in funny unexpected ways

Everyone who’s left has come back to me in a totally unexpected way and transformed a completely uneventful day: 

  • A postcard of a monkey eating a tender-coconut from Thailand that said, “I miss you guys”.
  • A personally designed calendar for the New Year.
  • An sms to share grief when Robin Williams passed away
  • A surprise visit & a box of black-forest cake
  • An unexpected hug at a conference  
  • An invitation to a brother’s wedding
  • A plastic bow & arrow, a toy-car, the tightest hug & an afternoon of games

With every person who came and eventually left, I’ve lived, I’ve learned and I’ve grown. I have a small part of their life with me and they have a small part of mine.