My Life Story.
Alumnus of the School of Hard Knocks.
Just in the interest of full disclosure, I feel I should post a little of where I come from and who I am.
Although I grew up legally an Army brat, my parents divorced when I was in first grade and I grew up in the custody of my narcissistically abusive civilian mother.
My Daddy retired from the U.S. Army with full benefits as a 21 year NCO when I was 12.
I grew up in the small town of Tuttle, Oklahoma, and at the age of 17 got a custody change and came of age in Corpus Christi, Texas.
I then spent the decade of the 1980s drifting back and forth between those two states, sowing my wild oats in a state of reluctant cronic homelessness.
In early spring of 1989 I found myself in Oklahoma City, in my late 20s, living in a worn out 1976 Ford LTD sedan that my Mama's pastor had given me, and finally got it through my thick skull that the Petroleum Belt was no place to find work at that time in history. So I considered the 4 compass points, chose East and drove until I got to where I could find work.
I then spent the bulk of my adult life so far in Middle Tennessee (mostly Nashville) doing what work I could get. This culminated in a job I held for 15 1/2 years at an insulation company in Nashville, fabricating a variety of insulation materials to fit around pipe fittings.
Eventually, I was forced to stop and take stock of my life and realized that this job was slowly killing me, between unhealthy working conditions and the stress of having semi-supervisory responsibility without the authority to get the work done. And also I was becoming more and more sensitive to the effects of the Southeastern Summer heat as I got older, until there hadn't been a Summer go by in over half a decade in which I hadn't missed at least a few of days work for gretting physically ill from the heat.
I was well aware that had I stayed until my soonest hope to catch up with the ever-increasing retirement age in the US, my "pension," while being a sweet lump sum, would not have constituted a retirement income and I would have been left unable to work elsewhere. So I decided that taking a smaller lump sum would hopefully enable me to start over in a way I hope to enable me to work to a later age in life.
So I quit that job and worked a temporary job assignment at an electronics recycling facility in La Vergne, TN, working for a temp service in Smyrna, TN until I could collect my 401(k) profit sharing "pension" plan from the insulation company with which to relocate and start over at my last chance in my aging life to a cooler climate. Specifically, the Pacific Northwest.
I attempted to obtain new employment and housing in the Puget Sound area of the State of Washington. About as North as you can get in the lower 48 United States on the Pacific Coast. After careful but errant consideration, I figured that this would be the best bet for me individually as a place to start over for the last time in my life.
Unfortunately, however, I discovered that there are two ways to find employment in Seattle: to either have friends in a position to get you a job there, or to be a highly qualified computer geek and go to work for either Google or Microsoft. Since neither of those applied to me, it took me longer than my money lasted and I ended up homeless.
Finally, I managed to get up a plane ticket back to Nashville where I knew there to be a more favorable job market and now, a few months later, was back on my feet working third shift stock at a supermarket and living in a rooming house.
From there, I have since gone back to work at the fabrication shop and am currently renting the extra bedroom of the mobile home of an old friend whose situation requires a trailer-mate for financial reasons.
A rather convoluted trip around to just about the same place in life, but sometimes people who take risks face consequences to go through instead of a payoff.