Charting a New Course – Part 1

This post may get long, I might even have to split it up into multiple posts, we will see.  I started this blog a few years ago when a life that was already a struggle got even worse.  My goal was to bring back the faith that I once had not just for my almighty Father in Heaven, but the faith I had in myself.  Fortunately and unfortunately I have succeeded at half of this.

I feel closer to God than I have in decades.  I now realize there is a plan and need to continue working on the skills I need to fulfill that plan.  Do I know what the plan is, no, but as I see my life moving in a direction I never would have imagined, I know Someone else is guiding it and it’s not me.

Over the years I have posted about anger, hate, fear and the hardest one regret.  I have discussed love, joy and happiness.  The subject I always come back to is faith.  Faith for many reasons has been a struggle in my life.  To me faith has a few ingredients like trust, respect, honesty, sincerity and dependability.  This is no official definition of faith, just mine.

I lost faith in others several years ago because I really had no one in my life that I would say fit my definition.  I had most people in my life “abandon ship” when things fot tough almost ten years ago.  Many people don’t mind being around to watch a “train wreck”, but they don’t want to hang around and help clean up the mess.

I have struggled greatly through that past several years of my life. I have put on a great front for the world to see, but it gets harder and harder everyday.  It is so easy to ignore people when they are down, we don’t want to catch what they have.  It’s harder to step up and offer our assistance not knowing how it will inconvenience our life.

it’s easy sitting at home surfing the internet, staring at a TV set or any other pleasure we have in life.  Hard is sitting in a hospital room with a parent that has NEVER been there for you as his memory slips away.  Knowing every time he wakes up from one of his short naps it’s like you just got there.  Knowing that he has no concept that you have been there, but you want him to see someone familiar when he wakes up in his confused state.

I have have made some tough decisions in my life that have been life altering and not for the good.  I have been paying the price for many many years and see no other choice but to change the course of my life.

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Can’t Do It

I’m sitting in an ER  room with my dad.  I know he will be fine we’re here because of his inability to take care of himself.  They will run tests, we’ll wait a couple of hours  for results and we’ll head home.  Sad part is tonight is different.

Tonight I was picking him up for dinner.  Not just any dinner, but my daughters rehearsal dinner.  Yes I had just left my daughter’s wedding rehearsal and went to pick him up at his assisted living facility.  He staggered to my car and started to get in.  He told me he felt strange and that he had pain and numbness in his right arm.  I told him to go back into the building and I would be right in.

I told the receptionists at the desk what was going on and she called for the nurses.  They checked him over and recommended he go to the ER.  

So here I sit.  Missing my daughter’s rehearsal dinner.  Watching my confused dad “bs” his way with the doctors and nurses.  Hearing him care less about what I have sacrificed.  Seeing or should I say not seeing anyone step up to help me so I can enjoy my daughter’s big occasion.  

Being yelled at and ridiculed by those I would expect a little support from.  Yeah let me just leave this confused man with a bunch of strangers. 

I give up.  I can honestly and truly say that I GIVE UP!  It has all become too much of a battle.  I am tired.  I am defeated.  I can’t do this anymore.  The loneliness and abandonment that I feel is indescribable.  Know ones asking me do I need help, am I ok.  No, what I’m hearing is don’t ruin the weekend.  Just let “them” deal with him.

So I sit here in the ER room with my eyes full of tears.  Looking at a man who has failed to take care of himself and thinks that he is owed everything.  I sit here by myself because he has no one else, he has ran the rest of them off.  

I’m lost, confused and full of helplessness.  I’m not sure why this is all happening and I don’t how it will end.  All I know is I’m tired, lonely and fighting a battle I will never win.

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HAPPY EASTER

Happy Easter everyone.  No long post, just once again my precious 2 year old granddaughter.  

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Just Sharing

Isn’t my granddaughter (I’m a young grandpa) BEAUTIFUL and silly?

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I’ve Become What I Despise

I LOVE my sports movies, “Hoosiers”, “The Natural”, “Blue Chips”, “Field of Dreams” and “Brian’s Song” to name a few.  There is a line in one of these movies where the coach is admitting his mistakes and admits “I’ve become what I despise.”  So simple, so direct, so me.

We all make mistakes, we are all sinners.  It’s the ability to notice and admit it that is key.  This coach went to lengths to once again have a winning team.  He fell victim to the system.  He wasn’t strong enough to fight the temptation to do what he thought needed to be done.  He knew rules would be broken.  He ran a clean program to that point, but the pressures of winning won out.

This by no means makes him a bad person just one that got lost in the moment, then found himself.  He finally did the right thing and admitted his wrongs, apologized to all that were hurt. He resigned his position and moved on to do what he loves and that is to coach.

This sounds so similar to my situation.  For years I have tried to do what’s right.  I’m not perfect, but I strive to be a good person.  Over the past several years I have failed.  I have been in work environments that have caused me to be someone I’m not.  I allowed my ego, my people pleasing and my placating to rule my life.  My fear of not being accepted and alone has consumed me and I have been untruthful too so many including myself. 

I have driven my life in a direction that I always despised.  The fake attitude of caring and having compassion for others.  I have watched peers just downright lie to employees about caring only to rip away their livelyhood and reputations behind their backs.

I find myself during this process of finding employment pushing me into directions that I don’t want to head, but totally out of desperation.  “Desperate times call for desperate measures”, but desperate doesn’t mean a bad thing, just something you normally wouldn’t do.

I am getting desperate, I have truly done something I have NEVER done.  I have truly turned this over to God.  I have said the words in many situations in my life.  This is the first time I have truly done it and feel God at work.  

I know the road ahead may not be easy.  I know God’s plan may take some time to be obvious to me.  But as long as I can keep from being like those that I despise and stay TRUE to myself, let. GOD’S WILL be done.

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My Awakening

This past week was quite the wake up call for me.  I continue to struggle to find employment. I took my Dad for his six month neurologist appointment.  My brother had his 25th wedding anniversary.  I realized how out of sink my life is with the world around me.

My week started fairly upbeat with three pretty good job leads,  then within 30 minutes one morning all three opportunities began to evaporate.  The one I was hoping for, they couldn’t figure out the arrangements for the second interview, guess I’m not a priority.

The other two prospects went as quickly as they came.  The one job which appeared to be a for sure thing went to someone else.  The other company which is expanding and has all kinds of positions didn’t have anything for someone with my “skill set”, which is information technology and accounting,  So current job prospects are looking bleak.

I took my dad to his neurologist appointment and his scores are making larger declines.  The results of his disease are starting to show with the great confusion, his attitude and his hygiene.  I did take him to buy a suit for my daughters wedding, but like most other things it is short lived in his memory.

My brother had his 25th wedding anniversary.  His three children held an open house for them.  I wasn’t sure if I was going to be able to make it.  Once I learned that if I didn’t take my dad, then he wasn’t going to be able to attend.  I knew if he went he would enjoy it.  So I got him there.  I was impressed by the amount of people that were there to pay respect to them for this achievement.  The out pouring of love from their church family is amazing.

The one thing I realized is my life is not about me.  My life is based on everyone else around me until I no longer have any value to them.  Even those closest to me, and there aren’t many, begin to demean and degrade me when my needs or desires don’t fit into their schedule.

The past few days have been very hurtful.  They left me with a feeling of very little value and a loneliness that I have never felt.  I realize the more I work for the “things” I want in my life,  the lonelier I am.  I begin to believe that it must be me, so I always fall back into line to accommodate the world while inside of me I am losing myself.

I don’t blame those around me, they’re the ones I surrounded my self with.  I’ve never stood up for myself.  I’ve never pursued My dreams, I have existed.  I have “people pleased.”  I have spent my life struggling for the acceptance of others and now most of them are no longer in my life.

I pray for answers.  I pray for this hurt and pain to go away.  I pray to feel what it means to be truly happy.  I pray for that miracle to send my life in the direction that I always dreamed it would be.  

I work hard to love God with all my heart, mind and soul.  I try to love my neighbor as myself.  My problem is I don’t feel it.  When you don’t feel it from your earthly parents or the ones that are closest to you, that empty feeling begins to consume you.  When you feel your world crumbling around you because you have worried and focused on everyone else and have lost yourself, it all begins to take its toll.

I start my day realizing it is once again another day that I will be doing for others.  This time I take to write and post to this page is generally the only “my time” in my day.  I know this is not how it is supposed to be, but I’m not ready to face the losses when I begin truly pursuing my happiness.

I will once again take on this day and like most others feel unfulfilled when it has ended. So as I prepare to hit “post” my day is over as far as “my time”.  I now go and lose myself in everyone else lives.

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Lighten Things Up a Little

I know I’m dealing with some serious issues, butI want  to share a sweet story to lighten up the weekend.  My wife and I have a 2 1/2 year old red headed granddaughter.  She is the light of our life and up until last January her and her mom (or daughter) lived with us since the day of her birth.  There’s a story behind all that and the good man my daughter is marrying in a couple of weeks, but that is for another time.

Iris refers to us as JoJo & Dadaw, yes I’m Dadaw, and the following story happened this past week and is true, enjoy.

The story is yes JoJo and Dadaw attended their first movie with Little “I”. But it is the story before the story that is hilarious. JoJo and I went to pick up Iris and the two people that live with her. I waited in the car while JoJo went into the house to get the crew.

I could tell by the body language and attitudes of others that tensions were a little high. It took a couple of minutes to realize what was going on, but once I did I struggled dearly to not burst out laughing. Evidently for several minutes before leaving the house Iris REFUSED to swallow her last mouth full of food.  

All the way to the theatre it was one person after another telling Iris, if you don’t swallow your food:

We are turning around.

No movie for you.

You can stay in the car with Dadaw while the rest of us see the movie.

And the list went on and on.
As we pulled into the parking lot it became the moment of last resort. Dadaw drove and dropped everyone off at the door besides himself and the defiant one. As everyone exited the car she began to cry with her “mouth full of sausage I don’t get to go to the movie tantrum.” Feeling betrayed by the ones that abandoned her, the kind voice of reason from the front-seat calmed her. In his kind sweet voice he said, “All it will take Iris is for you swallowing that food and we can join the rest of them.”

Through the sounds of her cry you could hear an audible gulp followed by, “There Dadaw swallowed the food.” And in that moment the forty minute battle was over. I entered the backseat to unstrap her from her carseat. She voluntarily opened her mouth so that I could inspect that the final bite of sausage was gone. I dried hers tears, gave her a hug and a kiss on the cheek for her determination.

It made for an enjoyable movie that much sweeter.

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