In February of 1986, I had a still fairly new husband, a new baby, and a new house. But, I didn’t even have a job. And Dan was only working as a meat cutter at a gourmet meat shop in Denver, for heaven’s sake. There was nothing wrong with his job, but it sure wasn’t going to make the over $700 a month house payment.
I hit the streets when Nick was six weeks old, applying for every job I thought I could muster working at. Within the first week of my search, the Marriott Hotel, on Hampton Avenue in Denver, hired me as a housekeeper. I could hardly turn it down. Actually the pay was reasonable and the benefits were excellent.
It wasn’t bad work and being fairly physical, it helped me lose the weight I gained while pregnant. After a few months I was able to breeze through my 18 rooms a day and have time to hide out and relax before punching out at the end of the day. I still didn’t have a clue what I wanted to do with my life, but this would get me through for a little while.
Dan’s brilliant, and temporary, solution was to take in boarders. His friend Allen had been in Oregon since our wedding and was moving back to Colorado with his new pregnant wife and her three-year-old son. They had no place to live, so Dan offered them our spare room for a couple hundred dollars a month.
They weren’t bad people, but did I need that kind of stress at that time in my life? There are lists of stressors in our life, things you have gone through in the past 12 months and the more you have had happen to you, the greater your chances of having a heart attack or a nervous breakdown. Even good things can cause stress. Hmm? Well, in that year, at age 24, I could have had a heart attack and a nervous breakdown.
Things would get better. Allen and his wife Debbie and her son Corey would move out, and we would even manage to stay on friendly terms. But there is always a new stress to replace the old.