Wednesday, December 12, 2012


Just two months ago, I got a voicemail from my dad asking me to call him. When I returned his call, I got some news that shook me: My mom had cancer.

Now, if you have followed and read any of my blog at all, you'll realize that my mom and I haven't had the best relationship, but we had learned how to be amicable to one another, and were actually starting to patch things up between us. This news was not good, and it wasn't going to allow me to get any further kind of closure from my childhood.

Last month, mom started chemotherapy, and it blasted her pretty good. During it all, she would call and ask me how I was, what I was doing, and if I could get away at some point to come up and visit with her. The petulant little boy inside of me came up from the screaming depths, and declined - blaming it on the new job and other hassles that life had thrown my way. I told her I would make time for Thanksgiving, and would come up to visit then. Mom was disappointed in my reply, but agreed. I made my appointment, we had some talks, and we had some celebration, what little we could find with someone in the same room who was ravaged with cancer, and trying not to be sick just from the smells coming from the kitchen. It was a tense Thanksgiving, and I don't think I'll ever forget that feeling and those emotions.

This last weekend, I got a call from my dad. "Come north, we are bringing your mom home to the Hospice Center. The cancer has spread, and they don't know how much longer she is going to make it." I went north. My biggest worry was not on my mom dying, but how the rest of my family was going to be able to handle the stress and loss. My dad has always defined himself through my mom. If we'd ask about any kind of appointment or coming up to visit, he'd want to check with mom to make sure all dates and times were clear. Any decision would be routed through mom, since they made all of their decisions as a team, and no spouse was left not knowing. Similarly, my brother was very close to my mom. They could talk for hours about nothing at all, and at the end of the conversation would determine that they got a lot accomplished. I never understood that connection, and to be honest I still don't get it to this day. How were these two going to handle her loss?

My mind was in overdrive. I couldn't form a coherent thought. All these scenarios and "what-if" statements kept circling in my head. The argument kept coming around to me about "Sure, she's bad now, but there have been plenty of times where someone has seemed to be on Death's door, and makes an unexpected turn around. I'm sure this is going to be one of those times, and I'm going to waste some of my vacation time on a potentially unnecessary trip." Against all of my arguments, I went north to see my dad and brother. Mom was resting, unable to speak anymore due to the illness that had now claimed 40% of her lungs, enveloped one of her kidneys, stained her liver, migrated to her lymph nodes, and nested now in her bones as well. I leaned over the rail of the bed she was sleeping in, took her feverish hand in mine, and whispered to her about how much I loved her, how proud I was to be her son, and that no matter what happens, I would always live and act the way she would want me to.

In that moment, I finally understood that the petty anger and hurts that I was nursing completely paled in comparison to the reality that my mom was destined to leave this world, and that the air needed to be cleared. I gave love and forgiveness, expecting none in return, but knowing that she could hear me, and knew things were right between us.

Early that next morning, about 12:30 in the morning, my brother called me to her room. I rushed there, and the family sang hymns as she struggled for each and every breath. During our singing of "How Great Thou Art", my mom silently passed away, and a peace that I have never seen on her face showed. I knew at that moment she was no longer troubled, and she was finally at rest and at peace. I kissed her head, told her I would see her after a while, and went to console the rest of my family who were there.

Life is short. There are no guarantees about how long you will be in this life. Make the most of each day, live it to the fullest with no regrets, and rejoice when you wake up the next morning able to do so again.

I love you mom, and I am glad you are at peace.

See you sometime soon.

Thursday, December 6, 2012


I am having difficulties in my life, and because you can't stop me, I'm going to vent about it all on here, and feel a bit better.

As you know from my last post, my mom has cancer, and I have seriously mixed feelings about this.

Now, I am having some more serious issues stemming from this problem.

First, I have a good relationship with my dad, and watching how torn up he is getting over this is really starting to affect me as well.

Then, there's the fact that my brother also has a close relationship with my mom, and he and I are fairly close. So the emotions and feelings that he is going through are really starting to affect me.

Then, we have my girlfriend.

She has a good relationship with her family, and doesn't have near the amount of dysfunction in her family that mine does. Couple that with the fact that her grandmother passed away just a few weeks ago, and she's really on me to try to do extra for my mom.

I don't know what to do.

I want to support my brother and dad. I want to feel more for my mom. I want to make the girlfriend happy and try to patch things up with my mom as well.

I just don't see it all mixing!

Granted, I can bury it all, and just deal with things as they come, but I refuse to let things affect me if I can actually DO something about it.

I know!

I'm going to ignore it all, and hope it goes away!

Excellent idea, if I do have to say so myself....

Of course, you and I both realize that this means there will be MUCH more for me to write about next time, right?

Win-win scenario right there!


Monday, November 12, 2012


I don't know what to think, and I don't know what to do.

I am a survivor. I lived through a hell that no child should have to deal with.

I was abused by my own mother while growing up. I craved affection, but dealt with a slap or a muttered insult instead of a hug or a word of kindness from her.

I still have serious hate for some of the things that my mom was able to do to me that I couldn't protect myself from.

Yet for all of that, I still love her, and I still crave that acceptance and love from her.

This last month, I got news that has put my head, heart and life into complete chaos.

I learned that my mom has cancer.

Not just a little bit, her body is riddled with it. Kidneys, liver, lungs.. She's been given approximately 2 years tops before it claims her life.

And I am torn up about how I should feel about this.

One part of me feels justice is being served. Karma has come around, and the woman who was able to put her oldest son in the hospital and cover it up as him being clumsy is reaping what she sewed.

Part of me wants to gloat about her finally having to deal with something that she isn't going to be able to protect herself from, and to see her have to struggle with it like I had to.

Part of me wants to cry out in anger because I'm not able to cause her these problems myself, and get some sort of vengeance personally.

Yet another part of me feels serious loss of someone who I have tried to impress and be accepted by.

And yet the final part of me is struggling to cope with the sadness of not being able to patch my relationship with her and come to some kind of compromise.

Loss? Love? Revenge? Anger?

It's all there. I just don't know which one I feel more of.

And with my life still seemingly out of control, I don't know if I have time to figure it out. I still have classes to deal with, kids to raise, and a job that I have to work. I don't even get a chance to visit her this holiday season because I don't have enough time off of work to see my family.

Maybe resigned is a better emotion?

I don't know. I just hope that I'll be able to sort out these emotions before it does some kind of other damage to me that I can't quantify or cope with.

Wish me luck.. I think I'm going to need it.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Checking in

Well, I should be in bed, but for some reason I just can't seem to get my brain to quit working today.

I am near the end of my classes, graduation is just aroud the corner for my degree. What exactly will a degree do for me? I mean, I have the experience, and now I guess I'll have a piece of paper saying that I have the schooling as well. I have never really understood why a piece of paper is more valuable than the experience of really doing the job, but some companies set more expectations on schooling and classes than on actually DOING the work you go to school for!

I got bad news this month, and I'm still trying to process it.

For now, I'm not going to comment on it, but eventually you all know that I can't keep things just tumbling in my head, and it will eventually make it's way into these pages. Just give me time to think about it all and what my feelings about it truly are. Right now it's so much of a jumble that I don't know what to say, or what to think...

Frustration seems to be the word of the day more than anything else lately.

Working 12+ hours a day, except on Thursdays when I have 18 hours of classes.. What a glamorous life I get to live!

Until my next post, keep reading!

Sunday, April 15, 2012


Yeah, I'm lacking it.

I can't really get motivated for work, school, kids, even personal stuff.

I could care less right now.

What's going on?


Maybe it's because I want to do things I used to, but my health and body just can't keep up with the daydreams I'm having?

Could be. I doubt it.

Right now, I'm just trying to find my focus again. I need to find that compass, and find my true north so that I can get back on track.

Because right now? I'm kind of lost and just wandering until something catches my attention for a short while.

So I guess you could consider me an ADD hiker right now. Something bright and shiny comes by, and I follow it until the next bright and shiny thing passes by.....

Anyone else ever feel this way?

Hey look! A quarter!

Saturday, March 24, 2012


You know, there are times when I know damn well that I have no control over other people, but I really REALLY wish there were times when I could direct what was happening instead of having to roll with the punches..

I have, in case you just started reading this (welcome you select few!), gone back to school for my degree in computer science. Why? Because I was fired from my last job, and even though I have YEARS of experience in the field, the job market won't even look at my resume without having that pretty piece of paper that says I was taught the "right" way to do my job.

Thus, I have put myself back into debt, and headed back into the classroom.

Now, I can't very well go to classes and support myself, so I have also work that I have to juggle as well. Not to worry, I can handle this as well. After all, I only have three kids to see, a house to help maintain and pay for, a car to maintain and upkeep, fill with fuel, insure, and pay for.. Student loans to pay back, classwork to read and homework to complete.. Oh yeah.. Let's not forget the wonderful woman I am dating that needs attention too!

Where, oh where is there time for anything else? This post? It's been cobbled together over the past few months when I've had some time to read something other than a textbook or installation manual..

This guy is getting tired. But for a silver lining, I'm halfway there! Well, at least for now I am!

You know what else is bothering me?

Guess what, I'm going to tell you anyway!

I am a very anal-retentive person when it comes to what I do, regardless of what it is. I have to do my homework papers in just such a manner, I have to turn in my reports and such in a specific format, and I don't like doing anything half-assed. The same goes for work. I like a structured, linear workload. I will sit for a while and plan out how I'm going to do a specific job or task, then plot out what I need for the job, and then work on it. I don't do a scrap job or just enough to get by.. I do the job right the first time, because I really can't stand going back to fix something. It's just how I am, I don't apologize for it, and usually it makes me a very valuable employee.

However, at some point this has become a detriment to the job I do now. I don't know how, I don't know when, and I don't know why, but being the perfectionist that I am is causing major problems in my work. Somehow, my wanting things to be just right is actually causing more problems than preventing them. I don't know how this oxymoron of a situation happened, but the fact of the matter is that trying to make things right is actually making things wrong.. Leave it to me to find the one loophole in a situation and exploit it without even realizing it!

There comes a point in time when I will probably get fed up, and scream "I give up!". But for now, I just swallow my pride, my ire, and my ego and just go forward. I mean, where else do I have to go?

I just wish I had a map sometimes.. I hate travelling blind.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012


Well, I'm just about to go postal, and it's barely into the week. What's wrong with me?

Yesterday, I had some work to do, so I took the kids with me, and tried to get it done. Let's just leave out the fact that I forgot to bring some of the needed materials with me, which required yet another trip back to the house in order to get the stuff I needed, and let's also forget that the shop that I've been using is also being used by someone else, and I have to share the space, ok?

So once my claustrophobic chore was done yesterday, I took the kids home went home myself. Problem is that I get into thinking that my work is done, and the girlfriend has other ideas. She isn't feeling good, so time requirements get cut a bit shorter as I want to be able to care and help her as well as take care of things around the house and my job.

Then I've got some issues with scheduling. I have classes three days a week, and a job that I can schedule around the class time, but very time-intensive when they are needed. I have a very large job looming on the horizon right now, and I'm trying to wrap my head around the project, while keeping afloat in class and the regular day-to-day grind. Plus, I have gotten an added install to do, and it's keeping me on my feet for the moment.

I'm frazzled. I have homework and studies to do, yet I want time to unwind from work and classes. Somehow, I don't feel like I can, and be true to my work and my classes. Yet my greatest issue right now is my drive to escape, and throw any cares into a pile to sort out "later". Where does this kind of thinking come from? What is my focus? Where is the objective for this goal at?

I need to find a happy medium, and see how I can balance it all out. I need to prioritize everything, and see how I can make it all fit. I need to set personal boundaries, and then stick to it. I also need to set some personal time into it all, and let the body and brain unwind.

While I'm at it, I need to see about adding a couple of extra hours into my day. Anyone have some to spare?

Monday, February 6, 2012


I'm getting tired of all these stinking self-help commercials that are going on anymore.

I mean, come on! Really?

Let's see. We've got some skinny little thing that goes on television to tell millions of viewers how she lost 20 pounds, and look how much better she is! To be honest, if the camera angle was different, I'm sure you wouldn't be able to tell the change, but that might also be my skepticism showing..

Then there are those pill ads saying that all you need to do is take a pill three times a day and keep eating as you always do, and the pounds will just melt away. I call bullshit on this one too. I'm sure I didn't get to be happy and "fluffy" as Gabriel Iglesias calls it just by eating. I also gained weight by sitting on my ass instead of exercising. I also think that my addiction to fast food instead of home-cooked meals would have something to do it as well. Next, define "normal" for me. "Normal" for someone overweight might be two extra-value meals complete with all the trimmings. Yet it might mean a glass of water, some salad and a granola bar for someone else. Who exactly determines what is "normal" when you are advertising something?

Trying to push pharmeceutical drugs on television are starting to bother me, too. Birth control? We've got a new pill/contraceptive/insert for that. Depressed? We've got pills for that. I tend to disagree with the idea that if it's new, it's got to be something better than the tried-and-true methods. I don't fear new things, I just prefer more thorough testing and research being done for drugs testing instead of trying to push things out on the market as soon as possible. However, as my macabre humor noticed, if you have the side effect of death for your antidepressant, there's an upside there. If you die, then you don't have to deal with being depressed, so that's a win in my book.

How lazy have we become as consumers? We can now sit, watch TV, and lose weight, feel good about it, and eat the same junk we always have and not be concerned about four self-desructive behavior. Maybe if we were all able to hire personal apologists for our actions we'd be better off.

The only way it would be better would be if the apologist came in pill form..