I have read more than a few "you complete me posts" over the last few months, and I have been wanting to write about the hubs and me for awhile. What I mean is posts that tell the story of how they met, annoyed each other, eventually rubbed off on each other and fell in love. I felt compelled to write my story.
If you have been reading my blog for awhile, you know I had a dysfunctional childhood. I ran away several times, and even jumped out of a speeding car once, while my mother was at the wheel (insert circus music here). Also, my mother eventually sat me down in front of my family and told me that they had all prayed about it, and God told them that I had lied about my real father sexually abusing me when I was very young. I went a little nuts that night, but that's a very long story, maaaaaybe for another time. I thought I would skip over all the early years of my life and sum it up briefly: abuse, hate, sadness, a few happy memories usually centered around food and my younger brother, yaddi yaddi yaddah...
Let me tell you a little bit of what my life was like just before I joined the Navy.
I had been told my whole life that once I was 18, I was out of there. I was also told that I had to go to college or join the military. I got a minimum wage job at a grocery store after I graduated from high school, and I rode a bike to work wind, rain and shine because I couldn't afford a car. My parents helped my older brother buy a car, not me. My Parents helped him with college, not me. So, lets summarize what we have so far- crappy job and no money to buy a car, no car to get a better job- let alone go to college. I told my parents I wanted to take a year off, mostly because I couldn't see a way to go to school, hoping that in a year I would at least have enough to buy a clunker.
Thinking back, I can remember more occasions than I can count where my mother treated me differently than my brothers. My older brother was going to give me his old Ford Galaxy 500 for my 16th birthday, that a close friend had given him for free. Turns out it wasn't really free after the moderate amount of work he put into it. My brother had already gotten a new car with the help of my parents, and as a present- he was going to give me his metal flake red "baby". It was a pretty nice gift considering we didn't get along all that well. AFTER he told me about my gift, my mother said no. He had put too much money into it for me to get it for free. So, there she sat... rusting and wasting away in our front yard- amongst the 3 foot tall redneck grass- for no good reason. Her frame eventually gave way, like it does on most of us gals, rendering her useless. She sure looked pretty though.
Anyway, taking a year off wasn't an option. My options were to get out, or get out. That's where the Military came in. The more I thought about it, the more appealing it sounded to me. I could learn a trade, all while earning money for college, I would have a roof over my head and food. Hmmm... stay with a crazy, abusive, and controlling *not nice person* and eventually marry the first redneck to show any interest just to get out of there, possibly ending up bruised, barefoot and pregnant... Or be free, finally. It really wasn't that difficult of a choice for me.
I enlisted in August. That in itself was an interesting ordeal. All my life I had wanted to be in the medical profession, but when I enlisted I was told that there were no openings for Corpsman (medic) School. There were, however, positions available to be a Cryptologist Technician (coding/typing of confidential documents)... Until they found out that my mother's maiden name was Spanish, and that I was half Mexican. Suddenly I was a quota fulfillment. Interesting. There was a catch though, it turns out that I would have to become a Crypto Tech first and wait for a spot to open up for Corps School. There was a glimmer of hope, and that was good enough for me.
As it turns out, that wouldn't be the only glitch. When I returned home from pre-enlisting ( I would have to wait to become active duty, waiting for my position to open up), my mother noticed that her signature was on the forms. Being that I wasn't yet 18, a parents signature was needed. But she hadn't been present when I was sworn in... meaning my recruiter had forged her name just so he could meet his monthly quota.
What happened next would only confirm what I had always known, which was that my mother couldn't stand me and couldn't wait to be rid of me. I'll tell you why... Normally if it was something that I really wanted, she would sabotage it in some way. This time she practically ripped the phone from the wall calling my recruiter's office. She asked to speak to the Lead Petty Officer, who just happened to be a Chief Petty Officer. *cringe* My recruiter was still an E-3, meaning he had started out his career as an E-1... and after 6 years for one reason or another, had not been advanced. This also meant that he was 4 ranks below the LPO. My mother proceeded to let his superior know that he had forged her name, that I wouldn't be be a Crypto Tech at all, and that I would go straight to Corps School after boot camp- OR she would have her Master Sargent husband (of the Air Force) help her press charges. All that was said on the other end of the phone was a series of "Yes ma'ams".
On October 4th, I found out that a spot had opened up for a quota filling Mexican *I type with a wry smile*, and that I would be going to boot camp on January 3rd. On the same day- my birthday, my brother would get into an accident working construction on a barge. His good friend Wayne opened up a barge that had been sealed for over a year, then disappeared. When a barge has been shut up for long periods of time, there is little or no oxygen, and a lot of times there are poisonous fumes. Wayne's uncle owned the construction company, and was on the barge with them... he had a sinking feeling that his nephew had gone down inside. While he braved the dark, trying desperately to find his nephew, my brother ran to the nearest phone to call 911. When he got back to the barge, he looked down inside and saw the uncle slumped and unconscious on the floor. My older brother was very close with this family, and didn't think twice before he too was climbing down into the dark. He was pretty sure that his friend couldn't be saved, but the uncle had a chance. Just as he neared the bottom, he lost consciousness too .
The police came to our door. All they could tell us was that all three men had been taken to the hospital, that the paramedics did all they could do. That was it, we didn't know whether he was alive or dead.
I posted this early for the Carnival of Blogging Chicks, the next one is on January 21st. Be sure to stop by then and check it out!
Stay tuned for more of the circus that is me, Part Two. :O) I already have it written... when would you like me to post it?