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author and what has been learned

How Did I Get Here?

I never thought I’d grow up to be an IT professional working at the largest privately held company in the world.

After my parents crushed me with their divorce I moved in with my mom to a one bedroom house in the smallest town in the country. I hated that crappy little house. I hated it most when I had to go through my sister’s room just to get to my room and my mom slept on the couch. I found out later that it was originally built as a dog kennel so I consider those my “dog days.”

When I rode my bike to the gas station to buy milk with food stamps, I prayed like hell nobody I knew would see me. We were also involved in the seedy underground of buying food stamps with cash. We needed the food stamps and they needed the cigarettes and booze. Fair trade.

My high school jobs were milking cows and slinging tacos. Since I could only work 18 hour a week total, the farmer paid me cash on the down low so the government wouldn’t find out. You may have already guessed that my mom couldn’t support me. So I paid for my school lunches, athletic equipment, underoos, etc… on my own. I tried to save as much as I could and even sat in a boiling hot car while my family ate at Burger King because I didn’t want to pay for my own meal. Unfortunately my mom would also “borrow” money out of my savings account.

I’d like to tell you that growing up like this built character and made me who I am today and I’m thankful for that…but that would be a lie. It’s a place that I never want to go back to. I learned that what I expect of myself is more powerful that what others expected of me. My story isn’t unique and that’s the exact reason I share it. It only seemed like I didn’t have any opportunities growing up but the opportunities were there I just couldn’t see them.

Start reading about my journey here.

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