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#366949 - 10/24/07 08:08 AM Life Changing Moments
RazorFoot Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 12/01/04
Posts: 2064
Loc: Seated at the computer, DUH
Since I have been on the forum these last couple of years, I have read many things that people have shared about their lives and their families. Things that have changed their lives forever in one way or another.

I have felt both priviledged and blessed to have been included in those discussions. People have shared losses, pain, tradgedy, joy, successes, and milestones. And through it all, we have all pulled together and supported one another to either provide strength and comfort, or celebration and recognition.

In reading of other's trials and achievements, you can not help but to reflect on your on life and look at the things that have changed you and the way you look at things forever. I was simply wondering if anyone wanted to share what they thought was the single most significant event that changed their life forever from that point moving forward. The one thing, good or bad, that made you stop, look at where you were, and tell yourself, "from this day forward, things will be different".

Mine was the loss of my second dad. When I was in my early twenties, I was working for a mall jewelry chain. I met a guy who worked for his father's TV repair company. Small, family owned business. And when I say family owned, that was it, him and his dad were the company. he said he thought I would be a good fit so he asked if I wante to work part time for them. I said sure and met his dad, Tom. Pretty rough exterior, street smart and kind of sarcastic, but very sharp. The type of guy who could turn a nickel into a dollar faster than you could blink. Always trying to find a deal and always thinking one step ahead. You couldn't help but to respect him, even if you didnt like him right away.

I worked there part time for a while and then because of some changes at my other job, I found myself working for them full time. Tom really didnt have the work at the time to afford a full time employee other than his son but he did it anyway. He and his wife helped me out through tough times, always looked out for me, and treated me like another one fo their children. I was going through some tough family stuff at the time and they advised me and walked me through it without judging me or making me feel anything less than what I should.

I found other better paying jobs, sometimes working two other jobs at the same time but I never stopped working with Tom. I always said "working with" and not "working for" when I was there because that is how he made it feel. It was fun to be around him and he taught me more about being a person and being a friend than my own real father did.

I worked with him for close to twelve years. At that point, I was part of their family. I called his wife "mom" and he was, as far as I was concerned, my father. We would go to lunch together sometimes two to three times a week, just to talk and hang out with one another. Sometimes his son would hang out with us but most times, he and I would just hang out and he would ask me how things were going or just get me out because he thought I could use some cheering up. He was like that.

Then, after twelve years of being part of the family, we found out that he had terminal cancer that had already spread too far through his body to be dealt with. He was one of the strongest, smartest people I knew. He was a friend, he was family, he was my "dad", and I was going to lose him.

His whole family was hit pretty hard by it. My friend, his son, was havign a really bad time watching his father go through what he did. We all did our best to stay positive and he actually made that easy by keeping an upbeat perspective and keeping his same demeanor regardless of the fact that he knew what was coming.

He did his best to hold on for as long as he could, believing it was what he should do for his family but in the end, "mom" had to tell him it was all right to let go. He didnt have to be in pain any more because he was trying to be strong for us. When she did, he kind of smiled, told her he loved her, and a few days later was gone.

He by no means was a perfect man and had made his share of mistakes along the way. As a young man, he had had his fair share of encounters with the police but he had turned hi slife around and done very well for him and his family. All of which he openly shared with me, some one who was not even his blood relative.

To this day, I still believe the time I spent knowing him and being part of his family, were some of the best times of my life and made me truly appreciate who and what is important in life.

I still think about my second dad all the time and I still go by to see his grave every once in a while. It has been about 10 years now since he's been gone and there are times that I still find myself thinking about what he taught me or thinking what he would do in a situation. Without the impact he had on me and my life, I doubt I would be the father to my son I am today. I owe him much.

Scottie
_________________________
"The greatest way to live with honor in this world is to be what we pretend to be."

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#366950 - 10/24/07 09:27 AM Re: Life Changing Moments [Re: RazorFoot]
Dereck Offline
Prolific

Registered: 10/04/04
Posts: 10413
Loc: Great White North
Thanks for sharing Scottie.
_________________________
"IF I COME ... I'M BRINGING THE PAIN WITH ME"

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#366951 - 10/24/07 11:49 AM Re: Life Changing Moments [Re: RazorFoot]
MattJ Offline
Free Rhinoplasty!
Prolific

Registered: 11/25/04
Posts: 15634
Loc: York PA. USA
Very nice memorial, Scottie. I also had the pleasure of working at that company with Scottie. Tom was just as Scottie described him - gruff and occasionally prickly, but deep down a great guy. He was also a savvy businessman, who knew how to handle customer service. When people had a problem with a repair that he did, he went out and fixed it at once. I have carried this lesson with me to this day.

While I have had many life altering moments (including being a martial arts instructor), one of the others was when I found out how I got the job working with Scottie and Tom. This was at a pretty low point in my life, and Scottie knew I wasn't making hardly any money. So he told me that Tom's company was looking for another guy to help out occasionally. So I started helping out moving TV's to and from the shop. Tom and his son Dave were very friendly, and made me feel welcome there. I continued to work there more and more often, eventually working there full time.

So what's the big deal?

Tom's company wasn't really looking to hire anyone else, and wasn't sure if I would fit in. So Scottie paid me out of his own pocket until I had proven myself, and then company started paying me themselves.

I did not learn this until after I had left the company and went to my present job. You can imagine how I felt.

_________________________
"In case you ever wondered what it's like to be knocked out, it's like waking up from a nightmare only to discover it wasn't a dream." -Forrest Griffin

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#366952 - 10/24/07 12:38 PM Re: Life Changing Moments [Re: MattJ]
Dereck Offline
Prolific

Registered: 10/04/04
Posts: 10413
Loc: Great White North
Scottie would be one of those good friends you hold on to.
_________________________
"IF I COME ... I'M BRINGING THE PAIN WITH ME"

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#366953 - 10/25/07 01:44 PM Re: Life Changing Moments [Re: Dereck]
Bushi_no_ki Offline
Veteran

Registered: 05/03/05
Posts: 1667
Loc: POM, Monterey CA
Scottie, you are one of those people I've come to respect, and I share your loss.

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#366954 - 10/25/07 03:32 PM Re: Life Changing Moments [Re: RazorFoot]
trevek Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 05/15/05
Posts: 3337
Loc: Poland
Thanks Scottie.

A few weeks ago my own father was diagnosed with advanced cancer, terminal. I've had a kind of distant relationship with him for a while, mainly cos I've been living abroad and we never really spoke much anyway.

I'm now trying to reassess everything in the last few months we have left. I'm sure I'll find that I've learned (and had) more from him than I ever realised before.

Best wishes mate.

TREV:-)
_________________________
See how well I block your punches with my jaw!!

Supporting everyone saying "nuts to cancer"

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#366955 - 10/25/07 04:56 PM Re: Life Changing Moments [Re: trevek]
RazorFoot Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 12/01/04
Posts: 2064
Loc: Seated at the computer, DUH
I am actually going through the same situation with my own father. When I was a kid he was a good provider but not a good person, especially when he was drinking.

Now he has what we believe may be terminal cancer (having chemo now but doc says probably simply a prolonging effort more than a cure) and I am trying to put the past behind me. Not the easiest thing to do so I empathise with you.

Good luck with your situation and I wish you and your family strength, courage, and prayers.

Scottie
_________________________
"The greatest way to live with honor in this world is to be what we pretend to be."

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#366956 - 10/26/07 01:24 AM Re: Life Changing Moments [Re: RazorFoot]
trevek Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 05/15/05
Posts: 3337
Loc: Poland
Thanks.
Although I can't say Dad was not a good person, it was just one of those relationships where a lot went unsaid.

Thanks for your wishes, and may I also wish you strength and courage and your family.

TREV:-)
_________________________
See how well I block your punches with my jaw!!

Supporting everyone saying "nuts to cancer"

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#366957 - 10/26/07 02:11 AM Re: Life Changing Moments [Re: trevek]
Taison Offline
The Forum Dragon
Professional Poster

Registered: 09/06/05
Posts: 3629
Loc: BKK, Thailand
I lost my mother January last year. It's almost been a year.

The cause of death were mostly a large amount of malfunctioning organs such as the heart and kidney. All of them due to a chemo cancer treatment she had back in 1990. She was able to live another 17 years before the 'treatment' killed her slowly because of all the residue that couldn't be broken down.

So yes, you could say that cancer took my mother too although indirectly.

I've never liked my own mother to be honest. To be real honest, I've never liked any of my parents, be it real or step-parents. But I guess my biological father is a good guy, but he has his weaknesses that I despises.

I've also never met a person who could 'qualify' as a dad in a teacher or a mentor. Every master I've met where just a bunch of people with knowledge, and they've never been 'close' enough to me for me to share my personal life with.

You people are lucky that you've been able to meet someone who cared for you despite not having any blood-relations to them, but in my case, I've not had that luxury and grew up mostly on my own, being independant and getting myself into trouble most of the time.

Although I could say that growing up by my own without a guide is very much like an adventure. You just have to try things out and see if they work. If not, then better luck next time.

-Taison out
_________________________
I got two fists.. Don't make me use my head as well!

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#366958 - 10/26/07 07:44 PM Re: Life Changing Moments [Re: Taison]
Bushi_no_ki Offline
Veteran

Registered: 05/03/05
Posts: 1667
Loc: POM, Monterey CA
Losing someone close to you is hard. I've been there, quite recently. I was very close with my maternal grandfather, and his mother. The thing that haunts me to this day, is the day before he died, I had the chance, and the gut instinct, to tell him that I loved him. I didn't ever say it. He died in his sleep that night. It was a hard lesson, and now I make sure to tell my other relatives that I love them when I talk to them on the phone, especially considering my line of work.

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