Saturday, July 30, 2016

Change, measured by the five rings

My life is full of changes.  A friend once challenged me to think where I want to be in five years.  My supervisor wants me to think about where I want to go with my career.  (Let's start with learning a few more of the tools, getting full-time status, and being able to pick my hours)
But, using a regularly scheduled event as a metronome, let's look at how things have been in my life for the last five Summer Olympic Games.

The 2000 Olympics began in Sydney, Australia on 15 September 2000.  I lived with my parents and eight sibs (youngest wasn't born yet) on the west side of Leavenworth.  My mom had just started a sewing business with my girlfriend's mother, so I got opportunities to see my girlfriend and her daughter whenever my gf's mother (future m-i-l) would bring them down to sew.  I'd just started a temp job on Shawnee Mission Parkway, an assignment doing data entry that would last four months.  And I was borrowing my grandpa's gray Toyota truck.  "AIBUBAT"

The 2004 Olympics began in Athens, Greece on 13 August 2004.  I lived at the house I'd just bought in Severance a few months earlier.  My wife and our four children called that place home.  I was working down in Leavenworth as a computer programmer.  I'd hit a point where I wondered, "I'm 23, married w/4 kids, own a house, have a good job, what's left to conquer?"  We'd just bought a red Ford Windstar.

The 2008 Olympics began in Beijing, China on 8 August 2008.  Still lived in Severance with wife and four children.  Still worked down in Leavenworth as a computer programmer.  I was a day away from my fourth and final trip across the Pacific for the war games.  But by then, several challenges had hit me - my faith, finances, and relationship were all suffering badly.  This was the time I owned a old piece-of-junk gray Dodge Caravan (over 12 years old, held together by a shoelace and wire, pray to God it doesn't rain)

The 2012 Olympics began in London, United Kingdom on 27 July 2012.  Still lived in Severance with wife and four children.  Unemployed for over a year - it would be another six weeks before I landed the job as a call-center-from-home rep.  Ivy had a job working at the nearby nursing home.  By this point I'd hit a major low, with my faith, finances, relationship still troubled.  And other storms were on the horizon.  We had a blue Ford Aerostar (a really old one), but it was on the fritz so Ivy was borrowing her mom's car.

The 2016 Olympics begin in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil on 5 August 2016.  Living in the middle of Leavenworth with wife and four children.  I'm working part-time at a major retailer, my wife is working at the nearby grocery store.  (Between London and Rio, I've went from unemployed to call-center-from-home to retail to call-center back to retail.)  By the grace of God, I've survived some of the major storms of the last few years. Currently driving a gray Mercury Grand Marquis.
But, I've got no idea what's in the future.  Besides my children getting close to graduation, adulthood, etc...and, looking back, I've never had a clue what was coming up.
God be with me.

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