Wednesday, June 29, 2011

There ain't enough slap for all the stupid in the world ~ Ultra Dave

Monday, June 27, 2011

Sport's Oops

More than one ball in play it seems.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Now He Waits

One day this week, on my long drive to work, I was thinking about my father. I was wondering what he must be going through as he knows his days are numbered. What goes through some one's mind when they know one day soon, they will cease to be? I thought about how I would feel if I was faced with that. My father knows most likely he will never see any of his grandchildren graduate from high school, let alone college. He will never see them get married and have children of their own, his great grand children. I wondered how the grand kids will remember him and what they will tell their kids about him. My father will most likely not see his 55 wedding anniversary in November. I know that has got to be painful to him. He use to always purchase my mother a very nice piece of jewelry for their anniversaries. I wonder if he will get the chance now, even if it is to be held and given later if he is gone. My father has his doubts as to whether he will make it to his 74 birthday in September. Given his rate of decline, I have my doubts too. I wonder how he feels about not seeing me in a house of my own, that he has made such valiant efforts to ensure I have? I hope he is able to by some miracle. It would also mean the other place sold already and that my mother will have a extra nice money cushion to live off of as well. I wonder how it feels for him to understand all the things he will miss? Does it break his heart? Does it sink him into the depths of depression? How does he cope with that? Is it even possible to cope with it? I do know he has made every possible effort that he can to make sure everything is taken care of when his time comes. I know he satisfied with that. I know he knows I will do everything in my power to take care of my mother when he is gone. Strangely, he doesn't seem saddened by any of these things. A healthy concern about timing maybe, but otherwise he seems to have accepted his fate. He knows what is coming. He has prepared as well as any man can. Now, he waits. And we watch...

Ever Wonder?

Being the sort of fella that stays in his own head too much, I wonder often where this world is headed? By world, I mean civilization, the United States, the health of the planet, politics and religion, etc. I know the planet will in all likelihood, continue to orbit the sun for some time to come. I can't help but feel a sense of hopelessness at times at some of the things taking place around here. The rise of the Teabaggers scares me. The rampant ignorance in this country is absolutely astounding. The health of our planet's Eco-sphere concerns me. The mix of politics and religion frightens me to no end. The disappearing middle class worries me. The sorry state of the economy bothers me. By nature, I'm a optimist, but current events have forced me into a realist mind set. I use to believe that given time, everything sorts itself out eventually with little interference from humans or a government. Now, I'm not so sure they can be a painless return to balance in any of these spheres that concern me. I also know the best way to combat any of these concerns is education, something that has been slowly eroding in this country along with manufacturing jobs. The sad thing is, this is easiest to fix, but not the quickest. Stamping out ignorance should be this country's number one priority. I also know that to maintain the status quo of those in power, backed with wealth and control of resources, will never allow it to happen. That saddens me deeply. It says a lot about what has happened to this once great nation. We have allowed corporate profits and personal greed to take place of those values we once held so dear. Hard, honest work has been outsourced and along with it this nation's pride and future. I believe we are so close to the tipping point, that even if everyone had a change of heart and worked for the common good, we may be to late to save this country from a great fall. Most people have little knowledge of the Mayan Calender and all the speculation about Dec . 2012. We have failed to stir the curiosity of our younger generations, which without that active engagement, innovation falters and so do expanding our universal knowledgeand ultimately the greater good. The cycle will complete according to this calender. No, I don't think the world will end, nor will any deity be returning on that day. I do believe however, that the United States will cease to be a world power. We stopped being world leaders years ago when job outsourcing to boost profits became common place and education became less of a priority. That was about the time when "reality" shows became popular. The nation was distracted and those on the fringes of our society began to creep closer to mainstream while no one was looking. It was made easy by slowly lowering our nation's educational standards and infecting the populace with consumerism and consumption. Our planet is also suffering for our ignorance and folly, all the while corporate profits are up, greed is out of control and the backbone of America, the middle class, slowly withers away. The ice caps melt, sea levels raise, weather becomes extreme and few understand it because they have become ignorant and lazy. December 2012 can't get here soon enough for me. I hope to see a major shift in the status quo that has held this nation back from truly becoming great. I hope to see an awakening of conscience in the populace of this planet that will bring about the changes in economies, politics, religion, civil rights, and environmental concerns not seen since the Renaissance and the Industrial Revolution. Do you ever wonder about these things? Ever wonder how to fix these problems? Ever wonder what will happen to this country, this planet, if we don't?

New York Did It!!

Governor Cuomo signed into law the bill legalizing same sex marriage in the state of New York. It goes into effect in 30 days.


Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Sea of Sorrow

The tides of time carries me away.
Swept off my feet into a sea of change.
I flounder around till I decide to surrender.
Underneath it all, there is stillness and peace.
The surf of troubles stirs above.
The shore seems so far away, so distant.
Is it worth the effort to swim there, only to be knocked down and dragged out again?
I hold my breath and think.

My mother asked me today if I thought we need to call in Hospice for my father. How do you answer that?

Sunday, June 12, 2011

More Flower Pics

He Ain't Winning

My father isn't winning this battle I'm afraid. My parents finally decided to go to the lake house this weekend. It was much needed after all they have been through these last few months with my father's steady declining health. I stopped by to help them load the oxygen generator and some tanks. My sister will be at the other end of the journey to help them unload, since she lives about 10 miles from the lake house. It is so disheartening to see my father now. From a strapping 210 pounds to a fragile 145 pounds. It breaks my heart knowing his time is slowly slipping away and there isn't a damn thing anyone can do to stop it. I can't imagine what is going through his head or my mother's at this point. I do what I can to help but I can't halt what is coming. I can only prepare for it, like my parents are doing. My father use to have the strength and stamina to work from sun up to sun down. Now the simple act of walking to the table to eat leaves him exhausted and gasping. He has taken to eating on the sofa with a tv tray and his oxygen tube on. There for a while he would take it off and join us at the table. Not any more. He has lost so much weight. He tries to hide the fact from others. He use to always tuck in his shirts. Not any more. His belts no longer adjust small enough so he has taken to wearing suspenders to hold up his pants, under his shirts so no one can seem them. I keep wondering why my mother has stopped buying him smaller clothes that fit better. I'm sure part of it is the fact it is difficult to find 32 in waist in a 34 length. I think most likely it is a way for both of them to not acknowledge how much weight he has lost in the past few months. My father sold his bass boat to a family member. He hasn't been able to use it for over a year now. He seemed to have a mixture of happiness and sadness that it was gone. I suppose to not see it go to waste was good, but also to know there was one more thing he can no longer do. I told him months ago, take his oxygen with him and if the fish weren't biting, he could dive in with the tank. He chuckled. I took his truck to the dealership to have the air conditioner looked at.I relayed what he said to the mechanic. He couldn't take the heat that long, nor do I think he would have taken his oxygen with him to such a public place. He is just now wearing it around his grandkids or other relatives when they visit. I took him to get the truck filled up. He rode with me for that. He took the tank with him for that. We talk a lot away from my mother. He worries about her health and the toll looking after him maybe taking on her. He worries about the old place not selling at a high enough price or taking too long or me not being able to find an affordable house close by to look after my mother when he is gone. After almost 54 years of marriage, my mother now is mowing the yard for the first time ever. She is learning how to crank the tiller on her own. Use to be she would have my father do it. If she has a problem with either of them, she calls me. I run over there to take care of it for her and make sure there is gas and oil in them. If I'm not working or on the way to work or just getting off work, I'll do it for whatever it is for her, if she will let me. My father stays in the house where he can breathe easier. Use to be he would be out there too on his tractor doing something. Not any more. Funny, that last, short sentence sums everything up. "Not any more". My father will soon be, not any more. What are we gonna do without him? I'm not ready. I don't think my mother is either.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Flower Photos

Happy Birthday!

Happy Birthday Tommy!

Today is my buddy's birthday. When I spoke to him this morning, he sounded upbeat and cheerful. I admire that about him. Despite all he is going through right now, (losing his job, losing his mother last week, concerns about hanging on to his home and car) he is still optimistic and faithful things will turn around for him. Who wouldn't want to be around someone like that?

I have a big hug waiting for you when you finish up with your mother's estate.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Saturday, June 4, 2011

In The End

In the quiet and stillness
I think, alone with my thoughts
I ponder the inevitable and the paths that will lead there
I sense the change and fear it not
These things must be, if I'm to have lived
The turmoil, the drama, they shape who I am
They strengthen me against the onslaught of living
For in these trails of life, I have become who I am now
Who I will be in the future, for better or worse
I accept the challenge, sometime with grace,
Other times with all the will power I can muster to resist
In the end the mission will be complete
I face it resolute and steadfast in my beliefs
There is no other way to live
but as though you were dying.

Words of Wisdom

Thursday, June 2, 2011

So Many....

This past week has been very rough around here. Four deaths. My friends had it really bad. I was sadden for them. I tried to be of comfort as much as possible. I hope I was.
Two friends from high school lost loved ones. One his father, another his grandmother. My great aunt passed away as I mentioned earlier. Her service was very nice and to over 200 people that packed the sanctuary at the church. Tommy lost his mother to cancer Wednesday morning. He was by her side as she drew her last breath. (I wish I could make the service, but I have to work tomorrow. He understands.)

I have emailed, texted, spoken with them all and sent a copy of "When I Leave" to them. It wasn't much but it was all I could do. I hate to see my friends sad. Death brings that awkward moment, when you want to reach out and provide comfort, but you aren't sure exactly how to do it or what to say. I let them all know I'm there for them. I hurt for them. They are in my thoughts. And wished them each whatever they needed to get through it and move on. I can only hope that was enough.

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