I'll be 50 years old in December, divorced in 1994 and no children of my own. I've not heard a peep from my X and her daughter since 1996 or so.
I spent 14 years as a tire, brake, steering and suspension mechanic. I stopped that trade as I had lumbar back surgery in 1993 and could no longer do that kind of work. I retrained myself to a certified novel network engineer and worked as a network admin for a couple places and then installed three elementary school districts as wide area networks with internet access in 1997. In 1998 I got a temp job as network admin for a corporation then was hired by that corporation in 1999 as a commercial buildings controls field tech. That was back when there was a Y2K scare and I upgraded all the clients pc's and networks for the Y2K roll over issues. In end of 2001 I started with neck and upper back issues and had to quit working in early 2002. I spent 3 years struggling in bed or a chair. I have no good discs in my spine, but have 2 pretty bad discs in neck, 4 in middle spine (thorasic), and 2 or 3 more bad ones in my lumbar. I struggle every day but now have gotten better so that I can be active somewhat for 2 to 4 hours in the afternoons. Mornings are terrible and winter is real bad. I'm now on disability and am greatful for that as I'm not able to be 'up and at it' well enough to be productive.
I grew up on a family farm where both parents worked so I got to take care of the cows and garden which I loved very much, as I'm a true nature boy at heart. In '89 or 90 I got my first beehive and grew them into 13 hives before I had to stop with back injuries in '93. In 2005 I had 4 hives again and in '06 and '07 I had 26 and 24 hives respectively. It was way too much for me to take care of as they were at remote yards. It was just too many to have to manage all at once during each trip to the outyards, so now I've reduced to having 7 good looking hives here at the house. I can manage going thru 6 to 8 hives at a time, so am now looking to get some property somewhere where I can keep hives where I live.
I like growing vegetable garden as well and have a small place here where I grow a good variety each year. This year I started heirloom tomatoes from seeds and had one strain that gave me some of the largest tomatoes I've ever seen which were a deep dark red and full of meat, quite wonderful. All told this year, I've had 4 strains of tomatoes, beets, turnips, carrots, corn, kahlrobi, sugar pod and sugar snap snow peas, lettuce, zuccinni, 6 kinds of peppers, 3 kinds of onions, and garlic. All this in a 10 x 15 foot space!
Working in the Garden and Keeping my bees has kept me sane as I was really going quite whacky with all the pain. I work the garden and bees when I can, and when I can't I lay back and just watch the garden grow and study the bees as they come and go.
20+ years, raise my own queens, feed when needed, I treat but have not perfected varroa management yet.