Wednesday, June 10, 2009

PROMPTuesday on Wednesday

Okay, so yesterday's PROMPTuesday was this:

What major decision(s) have you made in your life? What road did you take that led to something unexpected, or wonderful or not-so-wonderful-but-it-all-worked-out-in-the-end?

As I thought about it, the very first thing that popped into my head was, wanting to learn how to type. I was about 5 years old, and we had one of the typewriters that went "cha-ching!" when you slid the register back to the left...seriously, we had one. I'm THAT old. Anyway, my grandma was always in the office, clickety-clacking away, and I wanted to do it too. Well, my grandma thought she would deter my curiousity by telling me, "Chris, you can't play on Grammy's typewriter. If you want to use it, you'll have to learn how to type correctly." Little did she know that I would say "Okay, when do I start learning?!" So, she had some typing books on the bookshelf, and set me up with a bookstand, and had me go through the exercises. I think I sat at her typewriter for hours at a time, day after day...F-R-F, J-Y-J, K-I-K, D-E-D, click click click click...CHA-CHING!!!

This decision has benefited me in so many ways. The first time was when I was in about 4th grade, and we started having computer class at school. We would have to type short stories, and it would take most kids the entire hour to finish theirs, and I would be done in about 10 minutes. I think I was probably typing about 45 to 50 WPM back then, with pretty decent accuracy.

Then, my grandma got me a video game for our Kaypro computer, called Word Wizard or something like that. It was a floppy disk (yes, floppy disk) with a bunch of typing games. One of my favorite ones was where you had to guard your planet. Asteroids with words in them would come hurdling toward your planet, and you had to type the word and press to zap them and break them to pieces before they destroyed your planet. As you blew up the words, they would start coming faster and faster toward your planet. Boy, was that a suspenseful game, but it sure helped me type faster!

Anywho, after I was in the higher grades, typing came in handy when it was required to type school reports. Sometimes I would even type my friends' reports for them. I also typed up a short story that a girl I went to school with wrote about her family. It was really sad actually, her name was Tanice Stefanich. I have no idea where she is now.

And now for the grand finale...after I graduated high school, I was pregnant with my first daughter. I moved to Las Vegas to live with my grandparents, and I didn't have a job. My grandma drove me down to the Appleone Temporary Employment Agency. They had me fill out an application, take a typing test, and go through an interview with one of their placement agents. By this time, I was in the 85-90 WPM range with accuracy. I was called the next morning for a data entry job for a healthcare company called Sierra Health Services. I was initially supposed to help out with a temporary data entry project, but the gals in the department took me in like mother hens, because here I was this single, pregnant teenager, working as a temp with a baby to support soon. So, they started giving me other tasks to see if I could handle them, and I did. They wanted to hire me on full-time after I had my daughter, but they didn't have any openings, so they got me in to a subsidiary of their company as a front desk person for an Optometrist's office. And 6 months later, I was transferred back to the Health Informatics department. This is where my current career began...all because I could type. I was with that company for 5 years, where I learned all about a software program called IDX that was used to managed Healthcare practices. That knowledge took me to California, where I used the same program. I gained new knowledge there, and when I wanted to move back to Arizona I had a job ready for me to start when I got here. That job led to an opening at Phoenix Children's Hospital as a Financial Analyst. And finally, that job led to a position at a start-up consulting firm, where I am having the time of my life learning tons of new things, growing professionally by leaps and bounds, and only God knows where I will end up going from here!

OK...this post was hugely tooting my own horn...sorry about that. ;) But, seriously, for all you momma's out there, teach your kids to type. In an economy where jobs are hard to find, that skill is always needed, and if your kid can type faster, with more accuracy than the other applicants, they're in!


Anonymous said...

It's such a great skill, isn't it? My oldest is working on Typing Instructor I this summer!

San Diego Momma said...

Not tooting your own horn at all.
I love reading how our decisions/roads taken/etc. shape us.

Great stuff, Crystal.

familyadventureguidebooks said...

Wish someone had taught my husband to type!!!! (I always do it for him) That is one of my goals for my ten year old this summer!Thanks for your post. It gives me a little motivation to follow through. If anyone has a program recommendation stop by my blog and let me know.