What should you do when you are stressed to the ceiling of your office, when the walls are pressing inward, and the floor feels like it will drop out? Take a walk! Seek open space…sound psychological advice.

My spacious windowed office was no longer going to be mine in 21 days.

The reason for the termination was death: that of the leaseholder, a psychologist friend who had passed away.

From Mad Cow Disease.

And, she was vegetarian! No one knew how, when, or why she protracted the disease: it was only diagnosed a month before her death, after a rapid decline of all neurological function October – December. Our last spoken words were when I drove her to a hurried nail appointment.

Yes, she was a narcissist, but one can’t/shouldn’t judge the situation. I’d want to look good as a corpse, too – and most morticians are men, disinclined to attend to nail detail. Better to focus on a groovy nail polish application than an emaciated self in one’s mirror – and her friends and loved ones’ view into a casket.

The lovely sublet for my speech-language pathology private practice was on a wide street lined with tall trees, motels, and other small office buildings. Off the beaten path, so not many cars to endanger a ‘clear-the-head’ trek.

I’d spent my free time of the morning, anxiously calling every business contact I could imagine, frantically seeking a new office space, one not too far afield for my clients accustomed to their drive. Convenience greased compliance – and compliance was integral to progress, the ultimate goal.

I was covertly snacking on a bag of chips and sipping bottle water: half healthy, half not. Within a block I reached the wood office building on the block – mine was brick and the other was a Taj Mahal of rose marble.

I walked the lower level with a dozen offices lining a lovely central planter. A two story fountain featuring a dolphin rose up one atrium wall to second story height. It was Flipper, greeting me!flipper The air was cool, the atmosphere quiet and serene, and my body matched the new atmosphere.

I strolled to the elevator, entered and punched the button, noting the slow, lurching rise to the top, the second story. The door paused as if concerned about allowing my exit, a worry that haunted me for the next several years, but neither my clients nor I ever got stuck in the recalcitrant lift.

I walked out onto an atrium lane (not a hall) open to the elements – after all, we live in the perpetual sunshine of CA. Straight down, at the fourth door, a light was shining as if from heaven, visible though the large picture window of a suite. With wonderful blue plush carpet.

The taped walls indicated that their painter was on lunch break, as was I. I walked in, brazen as Goldilocks, and cased the space. Three rooms, about 500 sq. ft., twice what I needed, but it was empty…

I raced down to the large ‘for lease’ sign wedged in the soil of the corner property and wrote the number of the agent. I raced back to my soon-to-be-lost office and called her.

The office was available! The soon-to-be-lost was replaced, found by the Good Shepherd.

We negotiated a price and a quick move-in date. God opened a new passage in my life with His miracle: a building that came with free covered parking, a novelty that my clients and I relished for ten years.