Alas, I wait but for the one last day of work as I have known it for 27 yrs, 5 months and 29 days. Don’t laugh. I only know that count from the Civil Service HR that sent me a run down of my career status. for retirement processing.
Okay. Let me just reminisce for a moment as I sit here one day away from retirement. That’s not to mention an entire seeming array of jobs I had before that.
Second place goes to DuPont with a little over 8 years at the plant in Brunswick county mostly as a Yarn Spinning Operator. I was also a Utility Operator and a Baler/Cutter Operator on the creel side.
Third goes to the Bike and Surf Center in Jacksonville with five years. The smaller jobs were starting out with Daniel’s Construction as a carpenter apprentice, changing over to Field Engineer on three jobs. The last two with them ending me up in Wilmington. In the middle of the construction work I spend two years in the Army. I also attempted to sell life, accident and health insurance for a year with Western-Southern Life.
DuPont came after the insurance job. After about six months in with DuPont there was a downturn in business and I was laid off for five months and then called back. During that time I worked for Crowder Construction as their Chief Field Engineer. It was a good paying job, but the boss was a tyrant. The job site was Federal Paper Plant down in Riegalwood (Acme-Delco area), NC. I was required to undress in the garage before entering the house when I got home from work because of the smell on my clothes. Then I had to shower before dinner.
I left DuPont not long after moving to Richlands and started my ReCycle Shop doing bicycle repair. Then came the Bike and Surf Center. The owner there was more than a tyrant there.
After that came the list of other jobs that were short lived. I worked for AutoZone. The only job I ever got fired from. The District Manager and I didn’t see eye to eye. I later learned he got fired, too, so I figured we’re even. I worked for Holsum Bakery and for a short stint I was their District Route Manager. In between the year there, I worked for Kinston Wholesale Grocery driving a tractor trailer, where I got my license to drive rigs. But after I got back to Holsum I found it wasn’t so much of an up and coming opportunity. The Fox family that owned it was crooked as a stick. It was then when I got a letter from the Department of the Navy to come in for an interview and ended up accepting the job in Civil Service in Outpatient Medical Records.
The rest is the 27 yrs, 5 months and 29 days.
There is so much to tell before that as a young man growing up on a farm. My dad worked hard to grow crops and it appeared from what I remember he was good at planting crops and was blessed with bountiful growth. I remember corn stalks seven to eight feet tall. Tobacco that grew at least six feet tall and leaves so heavy when the dew settled on them the would break off the stalk from their own weight. We lived off of the food he planted in garden after garden. Meat from hogs and chickens. Hunting season it was deer meat and sometimes squirrel. I’m sad to say though that after all my years of thinking I was in a normal family I found many things in want. My mom apologized to me long after dad died for his favoritism of another brother over me, the oldest.
Let me just wander.
I was a farm hand. I started out driving a Farm-All Cub at 7 yrs old. I hauled fertilizer to the field on a farm truck by 10 years old. I tended over 13 acres of soy beans on my own with that Cub tractor at 13.
I hunted on my own until Danny, my brother and my best friend Dwight were old enough to hunt with me. We three and a bunch of others from the neighborhood worked the tobacco fields a couple of summers with Hobert Walker. Working in a tobacco field will make anyone appreciate jobs later on in life, which were a far cry better, I don’t care what it was. Back in those days students drove the school buses and I wasn’t left out on that. I drove bus routes for two and a half years. A grown adult driving a bus back then was as rare as hen’s teeth unless you counted activity bus drivers.
So. From seven years old till now makes my work career a long one, but it isn’t over.
In all those years I was as faithful as I knew how to my God, my church and leadership. I respected them and worked in the ministry as a deacon, care pastor, printing plant manager, IT systems manager as well as a musician, playing drums in the church worship team for 25 years. Overall I was very active for over 30 years in ministry. Oh yes. I tripped up and fell on occasion, but I’m no quitter. The last fall almost got me. Depression and anxiety attacks took their toll as well as a doomed marriage, but still I got back up, asked forgiveness and God has given me a wife and a church to call my own and my place to be.
I choose life. I feel in all my working career I have been tried, but blessed. When darkness loomed, light abounded. When disease reared its ugly head, the Healer stepped on it. He always heard my cry and answered.
This is for young adults. Never give up. Take circumstances as challenges. Over come them with the Word and the Spirit. Prove God to others through your life and you’ll never lack. If you feel you’re sinking, stand up, you’ll probably find the water isn’t all that deep. Let the mountain become the mole hill. The journey of a Christian is rooted in relationship with God. Make that a priority.
My work-a-day world ends tomorrow, but it doesn’t end my life. That is still vital and wanted by someone. My wife first in this life after God. I already have a calm inside me that surpasses all else. God has spoken to me this Word. Don’t worry son. I have this.