A new leaf
First off, not whining here just resolving.
I am not the best dad in the world and I am all too aware of this.
I want to be more than anything else.
I lost SO much when I tried to grasp for the golden ring and missed in 2000. Yes 11 years ago and still I feel the ripples.
I lost more than I ever realized what was at stake.
I would be gone from the house by 7am for my 1st job and be back home by 1am the next morning after my 2nd. Then I was offered a job in another state for more pay then the 2 put together.
I thought about this and the wife and I discussed this.
I finally decided that I would probably regret saying NO more then I would regret saying YES.
Oh how wrong I was. (On the positive side, I probably wouldn’t have the job I have now without it but cant say for sure. For all I know I could have been working for the Post Office if I stayed.)
I did not look at the big picture.
I did not realize how much I was going to miss.
Right off the top I missed 3 months of them growing up. BLAMMO. Just Gone.
Time that right now I would give up all my fingers and toes with a butter knife just to get back.
every day and night I spent with them foremost on my mind. I called every night just to hear their little voices.
Then when I finally got them into the same state as me I felt “better” but my wife, severed from her life line, fell into a depression.
I was leaving the house at 5am and returning at 8pm each night. This is better?
We had declared bankruptcy to be able to afford to live in this new state so we had no credit.
We had no family around us.
Due to the high cost of living we had no money either.
Just when I started to really groove at my new position, the dotcom bubble burst and I was out of a job.
I wanted nothing more than to cavort about with my younguns but it is rather hard to cavort when a 2-Ton elephant is sitting on your head.
I was now jobless, pennyless, 2000 miles from home and have 2 lil mouths looking up at me as the greatest man who ever lived.
Nah no stress there at all.
My boss (ex-boss) tells me that I could just send them back to Kansas and sleep on the floor at his apartment and he will make sure to “take care of me” when he gets a new position.
A fine and reasonable offer in itself, if I had still been in my early 20’s and/or single.
I distinctly remember he used the word sacrifice.
I just couldn’t do it.
I knew what I had already sacrificed and it wasn’t my sacrifice that was holding me back.
It was the sacrifice I would have to ask of a 2 and 4 year old.
I couldn’t do it.
Not that I felt that my very presence was such an enlightening factor in their life that they could not exist without me. It was actually the other way around.
I found that their very presence was such an enlightening factor in MY life that I could not exist without THEM.
So I made a token effort to find a job in Atlanta, telling my wife that if I didn’t have a reasonable prospect in a week we would move back to Kansas.
First time she had smiled in 3 months.
Luckily I found a job in Kansas City and when we moved back worked as a contractor.
Lucky in that I was bringing in money
Unlucky in that I was spending SO much more time away from my family.
I was miserable but I knew that they were around family now and that was something, that was more and that was better.
Tallied up all together I figured I lost an entire year of them growing up.
Then in 03, while I was working closer to home in a position at 1/4th the money and for this demon-sucking evil bastard, my dad passed away.
At this point I crawled into my shell and sat there in the dark.
My depression and misery overwhelmed me and I had nowhere to go.
More and more adversary started piling up on me, each one heavier then the next.
I can’t regret the last 8 years more than I do.
I lost more in the last 8 years then I thought possible.
I went through all the motions and I was there physically when I could be but I wasn’t really there.
Then about 3 or 4 months ago something snapped. Sprung? Bounced?
The pit I was digging became a tunnel.
Now as I dig toward the light I know I am still in the tunnel but it’s getting brighter and brighter in here.
I would give anything to have those 8 years back.
I know that cant happen. Even though I enjoy the fantasy side of life I know that reality sucks.
No magic, no odd talisman that reverts you to an earlier age, no blue police box to travel the conduits of time.
So all I can do is try to destroy all the habits accumulated in the past 8 years.
I say no MORE!
No more fatigue days. I spend 1 day of the weekend either asleep or damn close to it.
I say NO MORE!!
No more nights spent with the eyes glazed over as I stare into the idiot box.
The answers are not in there.
I SAY NO MORE!!!
I can’t change the past but I sure as hell am going to try and better the future.