I lost my job ten days before I married Tristi, and I had to scramble to get any kind of employment. Part of that employment, when Tristi became pregnant with our daughter, Caryn , was a part-time job with the Army National Guard.
This had its ins and outs. For one thing, I was not paid very much, making about $8.00 an hour in spite of my bachelor’s degree. The Guard was good to me in other ways, one of them being willing to train me as an administrative clerk in a camp near Dublin, California. This made things exciting for Tristi and me, because she was due to have Caryn in mid-July, and the camp training ran until July 5th. The class was easy, so I scored well, and had some good experiences there. The food was not such a good experience. We’ll just say that for much of my time in training, I didn’t feel well.
My inner “torments” peaked on my second to last day of training, and I really wished something would happen that would let me go home early.* Sure enough, I was taken out of the first hour of class and informed that Tristi was in labor. I found out later that she had been calling the base since midnight trying to get hold of me, but no one answered the phone until 5 a.m. I made the necessary administrative and scholastic arrangements, being given a passing grade in the class, packed my bags, and was driven to the Oakland Airport for a stand-by flight—all this happening on the 4th of July, a day when it’s hard to arrange anything.
The stand-by worked to get me on to an airplane, and, with a short flight, I made it home. Telephoning some willingly helpful relatives helped get me home from the airport, just in time to witness my first at-home birth. Tristi had gone through most of the labor without me, and I arrived half an hour before our daughter was born.
It just goes to show that desire, determination, and persistence can get you nearly anywhere fast, if it pertains to being with and supporting your family.
*Note from Tristi: Oh, so you’re the reason I went into labor an entire week early … gotta watch what vibes you send into the cosmos there, bud!