Today i will share about my thankfulness for the career i have. Men often evaluate their own worth through achievement. A, "look at what I have accomplished" type of mentality. When i was growing up, i never dreamed of having a family or a job that even remotely resembles what i do now. I will not elaborate here, but my youth was, for the most part, not the most supportive, the most nurturing. When i dropped out of High School half way through my senior year (i wouldn't have graduated anyway), my mother never asked my why i was home or anything. I took a job with a friend in a warehouse for a company that sold pool and patio furniture during the summer, and Christmas decorations, etc. in the off season.
I was once asked by a fellow Guardsman how i got in to the IT industry. He wanted to duplicate my path to get to his dream job. I simply told him, you can't get here the way i did. Not without God. He didn't like that answer, but it was the truth. I was delivering pizzas when a friend of my Beloved called and said her employer was looking for someone. I went in and didn't get the job at first. I was the second choice. Three days after being informed i did not get the job, i was called back and asked when i could start as someone else had quit over the weekend. That company then sent me to training for wide area network (WAN) protocols. When my beloved became pregnant with DS1 (see 2-Nov) i stepped up my education efforts and borrowed money from the in-laws to attend Novell courses. I never passed the CNE, but submitted a resume to a telephone company, and was hired because i happened to know their ticketing system and a little bit about Novell. This company then spent money to train my up in the ways of Cisco. Along the way i asked a lot of questions, etc. but i struggled to pass Cisco certification exams. After i was called up to active duty with my National Guard unit i ended up looking for another position. In order to be home in the evenings i had to take a 2 Paygrade and 20% (cumulative) pay reduction. Nine years later, i am still a contractor with the same agency i took that paygrade reduction for. I am actually in my dream job, despite feeling completely inadequate for.
In today's climate, and for much of it since my High School days, typically a H.S. dropout, without a College degree, or any industry certifications, does not sit in the chair i am sitting in today. Now, i am not saying all this to boast about what i have done, because i am here despite myself. I am thankful for this job, because i am able to provide for my family, and i am doing what i really enjoy and am challenged by. I am even beginning (again) to pursue those industry certs... why, because i can grow and learn from them.