Do our own stories ever seem that worth telling?
Mine started in Homestead, Florida at an air force base my father was stationed at during the Vietnam war, but the only good stories I got from that were second-hand.
1. My mother dropped me on the tarmac the first time the entire family was going to get see me as a newborn. Auspicious start.
2. I played in a backyard that backed up to a swamp that had alligators in it. I was too young or dumb to know not to play with them.
3. I was definitely too dumb to know not to play with a fire ant mound that my father discovered me screaming in. Imagine a baby held by a diaper covered in ants and being hosed off. Good times.
My childhood to high school years story were dominated by my father. In a good way.
He was a music teacher/band director. The family moved to my parents' home area after he left active duty in the military.
I love retelling my tales related to my father to my kids. For example- my one and only spanking I ever got around the age of 3 1/2; the time my friends and I met the Bigfoot hunters near the river (ask, it is a fantastic story!); and going to pep band practice and watching my father work.
My father was diagnosed with acute lymphocytic leukemia in September 1985. He passed from complications from the disease two weeks short of my 14th birthday in 1987. I much learned from him. Too much to talk about here, but there isn't a day I don't wonder what life would be like for my kids if they could only have known him.
What happened after that? Well, my family up and moved to North Carolina. He was in the military, but NOT stationed at a base. Odd right?
We picked a location triangulated to access Fort Bragg, Camp Lejeune and Seymour Johnson (yes, that is a REAL name) AFB.
I escaped middle school and high school intact. I decided to attend small liberal arts school in Fayetteville NC (the only place my father ever recommended WE do not move to) based on a a small teacher-to-student ration and abundant scholarships. It was definitely not for the male-to-female ratio which has never really improved according to the students.
I graduated in my basic four years. Changed majors three times to end up with a poli sci degree with a writing minor. It was useful enough to get me into graduate school at George Mason University in Fairfax, VA.
I wanted to change the world, but an internship with a local government office disabused me of that notion. There is too much wrong at home. I did get my Masters in Public Administration in two years. Despite my best efforts to enjoy Washington DC with my eventual roommate Danny.
We moved to Cameron Terrace in Alexandria after he graduated from American at the same time I did. It was awesome. Then I met my future ex. (the less said the better)
I was a debater in college and continued working with the coach through grad school. He was about to leave a year after I finished grad school. My alma mater asked me to come back and take over.
I was a bona fide professor! Along with about ten other parts to my job description. It was awesome.
In the following year, my ex turned into an ex leaving me alone back in Fayetteville NC.
I finally met the defining part of the last TWELVE (this is capitalized to remind me to come back and update it!) years of my life: the love of my life, my wife. And her kids. I became a father over night and we juggled the mix of step-parentry.
Then, our lives changed like crazy, a mere 16 months after we got married, our youngest was born.
More later- or you can always ask.
Whew, like I said, if you made it this far- the story is longer and way incomplete.