On September 29, 1994, I discovered I could not do everything alone. It all began that crisp fall morning when I awoke at 5:00 AM from a long night's sleep. As I crawled out from under the warm blankets, the cold air hit my warm face like a snowball.
As a single parent of a five-year old daughter at the time, my mornings always unfolded with the hustle and bustle of preparing for our day at school and work. With so many tasks to complete before my daughter awoke, I quickly darted to the bathroom to take a hot shower in hopes that the hot water would warm my body. As I emerged out of the shower into the cold air, I began to worry that my daughter would be cold when she crawled out from under her blankets. So, I looked at the thermostat, which was set at 75 and only registered at 60 degrees.
Not understanding why warm air was not flowing through the vents, and being the independent person that I was, I decided to investigate the problem myself instead of calling a repairman.
So, I descended down the basement stairs and walked toward the furnace to view the situation. When I took off the front cover, I noticed there was not a blue flame waving in the back. I assumed the pilot light was out and all I had to do was light it. I climbed back up the stairs in search of a lighter or matches. After several minutes of rummaging through the kitchen drawers, I found a lighter and descended back down the stairs to the furnace. I crouched down, leaned forward into the furnace, and flicked the lighter not knowing at the time, the pilot light safety couple was broken and gas was...