Yesterday at work I heard about a co-worker who was working from home this week because one of his young children had RSV. That’s very scary stuff for a parent. Amanda and I had a scary experience with that when our oldest was barely a year old. It wasn’t the only scary thing going on at the time either.
Like many new parents, when our oldeset child was sick for any reason, we immediately went to the doctor. Or at least talked about calling the doctor. Honestly, I’m not sure ‘talked about’ is the right way to put it. It was more like ‘strongly discussed’ going to the doctor. I mean, with all the well checkups, I felt like we could have been on a first name basis with our pediatrician. But this time there was wheezing, so we took our precious one year old over for an office visit.
It was a good thing we did. They ran a test and said that her oxygen levels were too low, and they had her admitted to the hospital for monitoring. I don’t remember a lot of the details about this anymore, but I know my wife wasn’t driving at the time, so I’m sure I was present for the whole thing. They put an oxygen mask on her little face and had her do breathing treatments as well. She had to stay overnight in the hospital for observation. My wife stayed with her.
What I do remember was that second day. I went to work like normal. I was a software engineer in test working for a mortage software company. It was a quiet day. Around 11 I noticed that a few of my co-workers had been gone from their desks for a while. Then the VP of development invited my into his office. He told me that the company was downsizing, and I was being let go. I don’t remember his exact wording anymore. I was to walk back to my desk, grab my personal items, and be escorted out of the building. No talking.
The hospital was planning to release our daughter that afternoon, and I was to pick the two of them up after work. Imagine the wife’s surprise to see me at 11 in the morning! It was a scary thing for a couple of young parents. But it all worked out in the end.
I already had been working a second job to pay off debt, so I still had that. And I was laid off on the last day of a full pay period, and the company offered two weeks pay on top of that as a severance package. The miracle of it all was that I was working full time in under 30 days, and I never missed a paycheck. I did have to move our little family from Idaho to Utah, but that was a good thing for my family too.
It is now ten years later. I’ve worked for two companies for five years apiece. For a couple of years I even tripled the salary I had been making in Idaho when you include the various second jobs I’ve taken here in Utah. I’ve worked a lot of hours, taught myself a lot of stuff, and witnessed my wife work twice as hard as I ever did. We now have three children. For a while we were debt free except the mortage and the student loan.
Through all this time I’ve served in church in whatever capacity I was needed. Building cleaning specialist, clerk, counselor, president, or scout leader. I’ve kept the commandments and tried each day to improve a little. I’ve tried my best to ‘be a good boy’, a good father, and a good husband. My wife has done the same. Heavenly Father has been so very kind to us. He hears and answers our prayers. He keeps His promises. May we always do the same, and may the next ten years be better than the last.