I hung up the phone and thought that life can be just so damned delicious sometimes. I guess there is truth in the saying that 'what goes around comes around.'
Kelly and I got married the week after we graduated from high school. I went to work for my dad in his construction business and Kelly started working as a secretary at the auto plant. My dad's business was growing and I grew with it. It hadn't hurt that I'd spent every summer vacation since I was thirteen working for him and when I was made a foreman and given my own crew there wasn't any grumbling that I'd only gotten the job because I was the bosses son. Everyone knew that I knew the job and that I had earned it.
Two years into the marriage Kelly got pregnant and had a beautiful baby boy and she left her job to be a stay at home mom. Six months after Andy came we bought a house and Kelly set out to redo the interior. She had a flair for interior decorating and soon several of her friends were asking her for advice and in no time Kelly had her own little business working out of the house.
Five years into the marriage Kelly gave birth to Kelli Anne and a more beautiful baby I've never seen. My life could be boiled down to two things: working hard to provides for my family, and spending every minute that I could with them.
Then my father died of cancer and I suddenly found myself with a business to run. I knew the hammer and nails end of the business, but was totally lost when it came to the part that my dad had always handled - bidding jobs, dealing with suppliers, handling customers - but unprepared or not I was still left with having to do the job. I learned several hard lessons when I bid jobs too low and had to eat the cost overruns, but I got better as I went along. Then I fell victim to that old saw that "If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is." There was a supplier who had been after my business for sometime, but I had chosen to stay with the supplier that my dad had always used. Then the supplier that wanted my business offered me prices that I just couldn't turn down. With all the running around that I was doing, bidding on jobs, assigning crews and the like, I didn't pay much attention to the on the job details and the first I knew that I had a problem was when customers called and started complaining that things were falling apart. The supplier had been delivering shoddy and defective material. To make a long story short my business went under, I was thousands of dollars in debt and my house was in foreclosure.
During the period when all this was occurring Kelly and I were not getting along all that well. I was spending almost every waking hour trying to save my business and keep my head above water financially and Kelly was whining about being left home alone with the kids all the time. And then of course there were the constant arguments over money or more specifically the lack of it. We seemed to grow father and farther apart and there just wasn't anything that I could do about it.
Then it got worse.
.... There is more of this story ...