From 1981 till the time I write this I was working in electronics. After Paradyne a worked for Light speed on vehicle tracking. In the 90s I worked at Custom Manufacturing and Engineering and in 1999 I landed a job at SDI a firm that designs and manufactures tools for the semiconductor industry. I remain there until my retirement in January of 2022.
I have great memories of road trips and fun with my family. In 1981 I met my current wife Susie. I did not know at the time that she would be my future wife. She had one son named James. We would someday be my stepson. I never called him my stepson. I always called him my son. Susie was having marital problems with her husband. I told Susie to go back to him and give it one more try.
In 1984 I married for a second time. Her name was Denise. Things went well at first until her mother started to advise her. Nothing I said could be true in her eyes. If her mother did not agree then it could not be true.
One Christmas, in a fit of rage, Denise overturned the Christmas tree. She smashed new gifts against the wall. Then she picked up some butcher knives I had bought for her for Christmas and proceeded to hurl them at me. Something inside me snapped. I gathered up the kids and got the hell out of there! Soon after this I filed for divorce. I had no peace. I had to get away.
One day I learned from a former Paradyne colleague that Denise had been in an automobile accident. It was bad. She had driven under a Simi tractor trailer in the fog. The accident had taken nearly half of her head. There was no hope for her. She lingered for awhile then passed away. I did not like Denise. And I no longer loved her. However I wished no wrong to become of her. I was sorry that this had happened to her.
Around 1991 I was in the Florida keys with my friend Ty doing some scuba diving. When I returned my dad said that I had received a call. It was from Susie. My heart leaped! I was secretly in love with Susie back in 1981. However she was married and that made it forbidden fruit.
In 1991 I began weekend trips across the State of Florida to visit Susie who lived in Hobe Sound Florida. I slept on the couch. Susie had a few kittens that had the run of the house. They would charge back and forth all night. They would run about and sometimes run right over me on the couch. I did not get much sleep.
In 1992 Susie moved in with me at Calton Arms in New Port Richey Florida. It was a townhouse with 1 and 1/2 baths and two bedrooms upstairs. We loved the place and would go on daily walks around the property always followed by are cat. The cat thought she was a dog. She would follow us everywhere!
In 1992 Susie and I purchased a house on Fargo drive in Hudson Florida. It was great! We had some land of our own to do what we liked. It was a half acre zoned agriculture. I raised 26 chickens. We ate the eggs. Soon I got tired of them and got rid of them. I was not cut out to be a farmer. Besides the chicken feed attracted rats! We had a hard time getting rid of them.
In 2010 my son Mark had a serious accident on his four wheeler. He had snuck out with his two friends and all three rode the vehicle. As they were speeding down a dirt road in Hudson, a car struck them and did not stop. The three kids were left laying in the road in critical condition. The girl had a broken pelvis and the boy had severe head injuries that he never recovered from. Mark’s leg was broken. A compound fracture with the bone sticking out of the wound. It took him a long time to recover from this. Multiple surgeries with metal plates installed in his leg.
In 2010 we moved into a retirement community. Club Wildwood to be exact. We still reside there. It is very pleasant living here with Susie. Mark was on his own then so Susie and I were by ourselves.
In 2020 we began hearing about Covid-19. Little did we dream how this virus would effect us.
In 2021 we took our last vacation with our son Mark. A houseboat trip down the Saint Johns river. A 30 mile cruise from Deland Florida north to Lake George. Both my sons Alan and Mark came along. It was a great time of cruising swimming and enjoying each other. On the second day of the trip we tied up at Silver Glen spring at lake George. We put on our snorkeling gear and swam to the spring head. All the time there were baby alligators swimming along with us! I tell you I was glad to get out of the water and back into the houseboat!
On August the 5th 2021 Mark contacted us. It was his birthday and he was not feeling well. Pain when he breathed deep. He tested positive for covid-19 and was admitted to the hospital. Soon they put a ventilator on him to keep him alive. Is blood oxygen was very low. Well it was all down hill from there and on August the 15th Mark passed away from the virus. He was only 26. Susie and I were devastated. We both fell into a deep depression. It is better now as time rolls on. However we will never fully get over the loss of our son. We just cope. We have each other to cling to and share our grief and memories.
And that is my Memories of a Baby Boomer. I hope you enjoyed. You know you can do this too. Just take a pad of paper or your electronic device and sit down and record your thoughts of the past. You will be surprised as to how much you remember. And you will a better person for doing so.
I want to leave you with this. I call it my template for a happy life. Here it is – Many people get hung up on the small things in life instead if focusing on what is meaningful and good. Focusing on small trivial unimportant things become extra baggage in your life. The following is my template for a happy life. Use what you can of this if you wish, and use it in your own life as you see fit. See if it can help you focus on what is really important to not only you, but to others too!
- Smile – Smile people smile! Don’t walk around day after day with a cloud over your head. This don’t mean that you walk around all day like the Cheshire Cat, grinning from ear to ear. I know there are times when it gets rough, and you can’t smile. This will pass. It can’t be all bad, so smile! You will be surprised how infectious this is. Soon you will see people all around you smiling!
2. Accept – People have different opinions about things. Some of these things you may not agree with. That’s okay. Learn to accept the views of others. You can’t be right all the time you know!
3. Disconnect – Set aside at least 15-20 minutes a day to disconnect. You may be religious. Take this time to pray for others and their problems. You may not be religious. Same thing. Take this time to think of others and their problems. During this time find a comfortable spot. Turn off computer and all devices. Close your eyes and empty your thoughts. relax! Breath deep. Feel the energy of what you are.
4. Listen – Listen to others. Their problem. Their solutions. Their problems. Listen. And I mean really listen. Don’t pretend to listen, but put an effort in it to really listen, and to be helpful.
- Play – Set aside an hour or two to play. Swim, ride bike, play tennis or other activities that you choose.
6. Exercise – See Play. Make sure that it involves some exercise. Playing cards don’t count!
- Help – Seek out at least one person to help. Helping others is paying it forward. You will be surprised how much comes back to you when you help others.
- Love – Love intensely. Love with all your heart, your fellow
brothers and sisters. Tell at least 3 people a day that you love them and you care for them.
- Get involved – Get involved in something that sets your heart on fire. It may be getting involved in your community or church. Or maybe helping at local boy/girl scouts. It don’t matter what it is. Just get out there and get involved!
- Do not suffer fools – You will find in life many foolish people. You may try to help them, but they just continue the being fools. At this point there is no more you can do. Brush the dirt from your feet and walk away from the situation. You are not going to change this person’s mind so spend no more valuable energy, and just walk away.
12. Laugh – Laugh long and hard. It is good for you. It clears your head. You breath deeply and take in more air. It just feels good.
- Do not expect praise – Do things because it is the right thing to do. Do not put yourself on a pedestal. Do not expect to be rewarded for the good things that you do.
These are things I do in my life that have defined who and what I am, and how to conduct myself. Try to come up with a plan that fits you perfectly. You will be glad you did and your life will be more fulfilling and fruitful for it. Dig? Now get out there and make a difference! Remember! Don’t sweat the small stuff!