Twenty six days before the accident
I’m so much better a man for having known her.
I LOVE YOU AND MISS YOU!
I posted a few days ago regarding losses – specifically the loss of my daughter, and a good friend’s loss of most of his lower left leg and foot.
Hardly an upbeat read.
However, Life is not just loss. Life also gives us lessons!
Since I heard from my good friend Bob regarding his diabetic amputation surgery, I’ve tried to contact him. We exchanged texts initially a couple of times, and he advise me he would call.
I feared the worst.
So, I took it upon myself to call him. Not to incessantly badger him (thinking he was busy enough) but once a week, just to check-in on him and his condition. And attitude.
And I ended up leaving messages. And this concerned me.
Bob returned yesterday’s message last night. I needn’t have been concerned.
Bob – (my former PI and gun store boss) was in great spirits! YES, he did lose his left foot and about 12″ of lower leg. And yes, he has a long, painful recovery and rehab ahead.
But he was not only doing physically well – he was doing well emotionally and spiritually, too!
Now, Bob would be the first to tell you he is not a religious guy. And not the most spiritual. But he almost lost his life to sepsis, and took his survival to mean he is supposed to remain here a while longer.
And not wallow in his losses.
He is fortunate to have the great support of his wife and two daughters. And his brother. And he reminded of previous losses and near-death experiences he has suffered.
AND HE SEES THIS AS YET ANOTHER CHANCE TO REDEEM HIMSELF!
Or, in the words of his parents (both deceased), “Put on your big boy panties and get on with it!”
And his is and has.
And, he reminded me (indirectly) that I have similar lessons. I, too, have had losses, and near-death experiences. And I have wallowed. Or more specifically whined.
I might lose some benefits. So what? Big boy panties are available for the wearing.
Bob has set an example for me to try and emulate.
Most of you know, my Father was sports addict, and as a result (because of my inability to play after the onset of my disability at age 12), I was a sports orphan.
And the culmination of all this for me is I don’t have a passion for most sports. Watching, playing, appreciating. Because I can’t play, and because I was saturated with it as a child.
(If YOU love your sports, enjoy! It’s no problem for me. But, like religion, please leave it outside my door!)
I oft wondered about the American fetish for the love of team sports – especially baseball, football and basketball. It’s been explained to me that it has to do with civic pride. And, of course, friendly bets around the water cooler.
Or the bookie.
Marx says religion is the opiate of the masses. In this country, the opiate is also sports! I guess it stops folks from discussing religion and politics(?)
MY passion is the ability to live free. To make my own choices. To not be compelled to give to others through the power and force of government. If I choose to do so, that’s one thing. At the point of a gun, that’s another.
And, of course, my passion for the love a good woman.
Currently absent. :-(
But that’s for another post…
My friend ASM826 (whilst reporting in Borepatch) spun a tale of government most foul:
In Maryland, this week, one set of parents have been investigated for letting a 10 year old and a 6 year old go walking without supervision. The parents want the kids to have what they think of as normal freedom, expanding as the children get older. Child protective services are now involved in a neglect investigation.
Of course, we don’t know many specifics. But this from the article in the NYDN is telling:
Danielle and Alexander Meitiv say the county’s Child Protective Services began investigating them after police stopped their 10-year-old son and 6-year-old daughter midway through a mile-walk home on Dec. 20 in Silver Spring. Police say they stopped the children and drove them home after someone reported seeing them.
OMG! Someone saw children! Sacre’ Bleu!
(In the name of piling on, I’m adding to ASM826’s tales of misspent youth)
I was raised in a small, white bread college town. Still, my parents placed boundaries with regard to my wandering. Roughly 1/2 mile in any direction, as boundaried by major streets I was NOT allowed to cross. Withing those boundaries were trees needing climbing, houses under construction needing exploring, irrigation conduits needing climbing down into and junk in alleys needing examining. And rockets and firecrackers needing ignition! I had these boundaries until high school, to which I either walked or rode my bicycle. One mile each direction. Then there were stores, shops (the hobby shop) and MORE construction sites, including an industrial park just the other side of the high school.
With underground electrical access.
VERY cool for fledgling secret agent fantasies!
Yes, I was wounded, scratched, developed blisters, was hit in the head by a rock in a dirt clod fight, dislocated my left thumb playing football, and broke my arm at school doing faux karate.
And none of these things with parental supervision.
I didn’t ride my 24″ Schwinn Speedster with a helmet, either!
Now CPS and the police are enforcing this NERF world. And taking more rights away from parents.
In loco parentis, indeed!
I’m in whine mode.
(I know I said at the outset that I wouldn’t use this weblog for therapy, but, hell, it’s my blog, so here goes…)
Why? Not only do I not have any funds to get neat presents for friends and family, but, I’ve no one with whom to share the non-materialistic parts of the holidays. One terrific couple I know gifted me with a cool assortment of cheeses and beers (including Lindeman’s raspberry ale!), and all I could give them in response was a small bag of garlic goldfish.
Hardly an even trade.
I love my sister and her kids, and her kid’s kids dearly, but going to a family celebration alone with certain people in absentia is always painful.
Now it’s the downhill slide from the New Year, to Molly’s birthday, to the anniversary of the accident, in March.
We’re told the best way to get out of this kind of funk is to create a gratitude list. So here goes…
I’ve a roof over my head, and a working car. Thanks to my friends! I’m on Medicare. I’ve disability benefits, which, while in no way am I rich, I can buy food, gas, and pay rent. I’ve a select group of friends, both locally and on the Internet, who help out whenever they can. Many of these friends have gone above and beyond – for years – when I am unable to give back in kind.
This must mean something.
I’m disabling comments for this post. Because, in lieu of giving me an Internet “there-there”, or a virtual hug (or a kick in the pants), please stop for a moment and create your own gratitude list.
Is it out there, anymore?
I remember my Father ranting about the dearth of customer service when I was a teenager – and that was in the 60’s.
Back then a guy in a uniform (or at least a uniform shirt) filled your tank, checked your oil, and cleaned your windshield. And no tip was asked or expected. Now, IF there’s a monitor/cashier at the self-service gas station behind the bulletproof glass, it’s an effort to get them to look up from their graphic novel to take your card for purchase.
And waiters/waitresses? One would think when they are first being trained, they would be instructed that the more courteous and efficient they are, the better tip they will receive. But most these days are barely capable in getting your food to you at all. Need extra napkins or a refill on that beverage? Good luck with that.
And getting the order correct in the first place? Fuggedaboutit!
Retail stores? Just try to find someone who has any idea where stock might be, or even be able to direct you to it.
Call centers? Pshaw.
And we who chat regarding firearms on the Internet are familiar with H & K’s (in)famous lack of customer service.
One word. OBAMACARE. And government services in general.
And, while I’m on the subject – do any of these aforementioned folks speak American English? This assumes I don’t have to migrate through a computer-generated menu prompt resembling a RPG in Urdu to get to a human.
We now return you to your post-holiday festivities.
This is not a manner of confession, but rather an observation. (And also why I generally keep my real identity in this blog anonymous) There is a push to include mental health as part of the record used to do government-sponsored background checks prior to the purchase of a firearm. If we knew these records would be kept private, and only persons who were a definite threat to others were denied, I might get on board with such a system. If I thought free commerce restriction was the government’s business.
However, based on what has happened in New York and elsewhere (confiscations-after-the-fact) and the government is defining inappropriate mental health for firearms ownership in the most loose of terms (like being prescribed an antidepressant or visiting a therapist for any reason) I must conclude that is simply another tentacle in the
gun people control web.
So much for HIPAA, and medical privacy. After all, it’s the government’s business if you are in marriage counseling, or slightly depressed, or a good friend just passed away.
Because we’re all so fragile we might off ourselves, or others.
With evil guns.
BTW, both the ex-wife and I have owned firearms. And currently live 1/4 mile apart. And nothing has happened between us violently. In fact we are friends.
I hope my record isn’t in the system(?)
h/t Say Uncle
(I don’t know if that’s the correct term, but, it seems to apply.)
When I was in early elementary school, I had a great dentist. No pain, trinkets afterward. When I was in the Second Grade, I got a skull ring with ruby eyes for myself, and a heart ring for Susan Johnson, my girlfriend.
Then my Dad married my stepmother that Summer, and we moved. And I never saw her again. Nor the cool dentist. :-(
My adult teeth came in, and in junior high came time for me to revisit a dentist. My stepmother took me to hers, who had apprenticed under Dr. Mengele!
Not enough anesthetic, no sympathy, my own unfamiliarity with adult teeth. It was like that movie that set dentistry back 150 years…
And, my stepmother being embarrassed by my ‘carrying-on’ just never took me back. EVER.
And my teeth, which are very soft (I’m told because I was born premature) just rotted on the vine. My Dad’s example didn’t help, either. He had full upper false teeth by the time he was twenty-one!
So, much of my adult life has been avoiding dentists and dentistry, or having no insurance, or funds, and dealing with the wreckage of my past.
My current situation is a lower molar, filling compromised, tooth self-destructing. Fortunately, tooth pain has been intermittent and dealt with with topical aids. But recently part of the tooth broke, and the side is chronically abrading the side of my tongue when I speak.
And I like talking. OW!
I was able to blunt the edge enough to make things more comfortable – but I know a dentist visit is in my future.
And I keep repeating in my head, “Is it SAFE?”
It’s November 24, GUFFAW’S Birthday! I’m 62 !
AND, it’s time for a tonsorial update.
Remember, June 26, 2014, the post entitled Tonsorial Splendor?
Well, here’s an update:
Or Gabby Hayes*…
(*Children, ask your parents, or use that Internets thing!)
Halloween was probably my favorite holiday – as a child. When else can I go out at night, largely unescorted after I reached school-age, and extort goodies from as many neighbors as I could, all whilst my identity was hidden!
Living in a city-locked white-bread college town, possible dangers were negligible, and we could get popcorn balls and caramel apples along with the usual candy bars and such. I even remember returning home on one occasion to get a second bag!
Then, I became a teen, and my interests lie in other than candy…
Fast-forward to fatherhood, and escorting my tiny daughter in her princess costume to a few neighbors. This evolved to letting her go out by herself, in costumes she herself had sewn and designed (Jean Grey from the XMen, for example). Dad got into the act at work, oft winning department costume contests, using makeup, wigs, even shaving my head and/or face a couple of times to make a costume character come together!
After the accident, the holiday lost it’s appeal. I dressed up a couple times at work – but my heart wasn’t in it.
I don’t even give out candy. Getting up and down to answer the door is just too time consuming and physically difficult.
And besides, Jean Grey doesn’t stop by, anymore.