Uncle Dan (darkaddictsd) wrote,
Uncle Dan

2001: Year of Change

So, anyway. A few of the people on my FList have been doing this Meme-thing in which you give them the year you were born, and they give you a year in your lifetime to write about. blaizewind told me to write about 2001. Lots of stuff happened. See if I can summarize.

In January, I had just moved to Watertown to be with Gena, a woman who was bearing my child. We had no money, no place to live, we were staying with her sister, and neither of us had jobs. I had no idea what I was going to do about this coming bundle of joy. I was terrified, for pretty good reason. I was just fine making my way on my own. I had no way of supporting a family just yet, though. So, I descended into myself, just barely surviving, trying to be supportive of Gena, even though she wasn't doing anything out of the ordinary to deserve support. It should have been evident at that point that we didn't love each other. But, what could we do?

Tristan was born Feb. 7 of that year, two years before my 20th birthday. I was a father. I was overjoyed. I was so proud of this little creature that seemed so very tiny. Of course, when he slept, and I had time to think, I was still terrified. I couldn't find work, my job history sucked, bouncing from one part-time job to the next does nothing for your job history. I took care of Tris as much as possible, because I wanted to spend so much time with him, and also because Gena didn't do very much for him. Another sign of things to come. We all moved back in with my Dad, and he was so very proud of his grandson. I spent as much time as I could with him, while talking to the only people that would hire me. Recruiters for the US Navy. They were confident that after a psych eval, I would be accepted into the Navy. Yet more foreshadowing of things to come. I worked out to meet weight requirements, and got the psych eval. It took two more months before I went through M.E.P.s in Sioux Falls. I arrived at Basic Training on June 20th, 2001.

I was placed in a Division of 100 other recruits, all trying to just get through Basic. We were beaten down, broken down, and trained up. I graduated Basic on August 23rd, in the best shape of my life. Gena said she would find a way to be there for my graduation, but of course, she didn't show. I was sent off to my advanced training, and life got even more hectic. I was sending money back to my Dad, for Tristan and Gena. That set up seemed to work well. Of course, Gena always complained, because Dad would not take care of Tristan, and he wouldn't baby-sit him. He expected Gena to actually be Tristan's mother. Silly man. I graduated at the top of my class in almost every subject I was taught. I breezed through Naval Engineering classes, became a Fireman in the Navy, and went on to my "A" school. And, to help Tristan and Gena get Navy health insurance, I got married to her.

It was basically a mock ceremony on November 4th, 2001. I was in my Dress Blues, and she was in a skirt. I had already bought her ring a while ago, and I bought my ring at a pawn shop. She still didn't have a job.

I continued to do well in the military, knowing I was doing it all for my son. At the end of the year, I was a Fireman Apprentice in the Navy, my wife and son were living with my father, who I trusted to take care of the finances I sent him. Everything was going well.

Except that everything hinged on my son being taken care of in my absence. I didn't know that in just under a year, everything was going to be different.

So kids, give me your date of birth, and I will respond with a year you shall write about. Have fun.
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