All things have a beginning. I always hear this phrase in reference to the end. But I would argue the part of things worth paying attention to is the beginning. My life has a beginning. This is me,skipping a rock over the surface of my life. The highlights and lowlights of where I have come from.
Note: Grab your coffee now, make a bathroom run, and settle in, this is longer than what I usually have to say. (28 years doesn’t condense well.)
1986. I was borned in Laguna, California. I have no memories and I know very little about my time in California.
My earliest memories come from Port Orchard, Washington where we lived for a couple of years before we moved to Jacksonville, Florida. We moved to Jacksonville for my mom’s job. She worked at Merril Lynch down in FL as a computer programmer and my dad worked for an auto parts distribution company. I have very little grasp of what my parents did besides this. For the last two years of our time in Florida, my half sister lived with us for her last two years of high school. The school we went to was University Christian School. I enjoyed my time there, though the only events of note were the few moments I was in trouble whether it be due to my own actions or false accusations from others.
[Having to explain that I lived in Jacksonville, I actually had to look up my old address in order to make sure I was explaining it correctly. I wanted to make sure I didn’t live in some suburb of Jacksonville with a proper name I’ve never known because I’ve always just called it ‘Jacksonville.’]
I lived in Jacksonville for about 6 years before I moved back to Port Orchard (PO). When we moved to PO, I went to Orchard Heights for 5th & 6th Grade (public school), South Kitsap Christian School (private school) for 7th & 8th grade, John Sedgwick Junior High (public school) for 9th, and finalized my educational career at the esteemed South Kitsap High School (public school).
We moved to PO because my mom took a job as a computer programmer with Northern Life Insurance Company. This led to a job with ING Direct, as they were bought out and became a subsidiary. And then all of a sudden she was no longer working there.
ING is owned by a European group. When they bought Northern Life Insurance Company, they decided to outsource my mom’s job because they already had a workgroup doing the same/similar work as my mom on the east coast in CT. So, she went from a well paying job to unemployed, to working part time for a local author as an accountant. Obviously, the economics of it all don’t balance well and my parents didn’t change their lifestyle even though their finances changed.
Meanwhile, my dad was working at a local auto parts store (not Napa Autoparts, but this is the right idea.) He was also involved in a local performing arts theater and so was I.
Growing up I had always been involved in sports to some extent. From T-ball on up I played baseball, there was even a year while we were in Florida that I played football. I would estimate a failed year.
They sorted the teams by weight class and I was a chunky kid who was destroyed by kids three and four years older than I was. When you’re getting stomped on, it leaves a sour taste in my mouth. I’ve gotten over it, it is just unfortunate.
I started playing basketball and continued playing baseball when we moved back to PO. I played both sports on and off till 9th grade. Starting in 9th grade I began lessons on the electric bass and got involved in musical theater. Both were great for me. I am not very competitive and this allowed me to be more creative and dig into art I could wrap my hands and mind around.
Music stuck with me through high school. I tried the JROTC and DECA programs at my high school; but, music is what really resonated with me, whether in bands, theater, or just rocking out in my room playing along with the radio.
Music took me to college. The University of Idaho (U of I) Lionel Hampton School of Music is where I landed. I had a friend who was going to school at the U of I at the time and I decided if it was good enough to him, it is good enough for me.
Before I moved off to college, my parents lost their house due to their financial choices and in the summer of 2004, we packed up all our worldly possessions and hit the road for a sliver of real estate they owned near Santa, Idaho (there is no claus that requires me to mention this.)
I was there with them for a less than a month before I went to Moscow, Idaho to go to school. Still further financial issues caused them to move to Moscow as well after I had been going to school for a couple years. They lived in Moscow for a year while I finished my third year studying Music Theory.
This is where things slow zoom in the most. I’ll still try to be brief but I can’t leave out too many details either.
After my third year at school my dad decided to leave my mom. Thus leaving my mom and I in Moscow. I decided to take time off from school, I wasn’t really doing well at this point and I didn’t really care about it anyways. It was good to have a break. I had been working as well as going to school up to this point and it was good to get to focus on just the one thing at a time. I transitioned positions from Quiznos Subs as a Sandwich Connoisseur to Starbucks to be a Barista.
While working at Starbucks I started making friends and connecting with people. My time spent at Starbucks, about 4 years in all, in the Fall of 2008, I met one special young lady who, in the Fall of 2010, became my wife. My mom has also since remarried to a great man who has become a second father to me in ways.
I returned to the University of Idaho in 2011 to complete my degree, a Bachelor of Science in General Studies, Minor in Business, and Entrepreneurial Certificate. I Graduated in 2013, meanwhile working part time at a local church where I am now working full time since I graduated. My peers (really more my friends and family at this point) are the same people who love me and support me enough today to take a sabbatical so that I can deal with the issues that cause me to be so misplaced. They see me and they know I’m not doing well. This is extremely apparent in the way I interact with so many of them as this last year has been especially difficult.
June of 2013 my dad passed away. And this summer, almost a year later it all finally caught up with me. The stress of work and the reality of life finally dropped on me all at once.
And now my community loves me enough to send me out the door for rest and healing. They love me and want the best for me. I now strive to rest and heal. Having laid it all out in plain text, changes little but gives me hope as I continue to grow and heal from these years of suppressing my hurt and feelings.
That is how I’ve dealt with the loss and passing of my dad. I have pushed it way down deep in side of me where I don’t have to look at it, think about it, or even fathom it. After my dad passed, I told enough people about it so I wouldn't be bubbling over anymore.
It has been bubbling over again.
Now I have to deal with it.
I’m not growing.
I’m hurting people I love.
Now I’m dealing with it.