There is a teenage girl who looks at pictures of her father, reads the date and says, “’71 is a long time ago and that is not your entire life.”
She flips through a few more photos, critiques pictures of her mother and dad, stops to say one of her cousin looks very much like I once did and makes a comment about ‘dad’s lady friends.’
It comes because I tell her that multiple people have said her oldest first cousin looks very much like I did at 18.
“Little girl, if you want to see pictures of the ‘real’ lady friends and I there are a few. Come take a look.”
She groans and says ‘ew’ and waves me away trying to ignore my chuckling.
Moments later I hear her mutter something about me singing along with a gross song.
In the morning
Don’t say you love me
‘Cause I’ll only kick you out of the door
When I See You Again
I tore open a box with some old photos searching for a shot of a four year-old me perched upon my father’s back.
Too little sleep, too many moves and too much going on has made me uncertain about whether I have a copy or if it lies in a box or album at my parent’s house.
It is not unusual for me to have wild and vivid dreams. I am a natural storyteller and my thoughts are always filled with…stuff.
I woke up this morning having walked with my father in my dreams again. Sometimes I am 10 and sometimes I am 40 and every other age in between and after.
Sometimes I replay conversations from when he first got diagnosed about how he probably wouldn’t be around to see me turn 60 or 65.
“I’ll always be young, never middle aged.”
We laughed about it and talked about more important matters like what he wanted me to do after he was gone.
Later we talked about how I am as old now as my dad’s little brother was when he died.
It is strange, Uncle Mark never made it to 50. I always knew it was young but since I was a couple months short of 25 when he died I really didn’t understand how young he was.
I doubt any of my sisters recognized then that by the time my dad was 51 he had buried both his mother and only sibling.
Much of that was because mom and dad did a good job of protecting us. We were in a bubble and it never occurred to us that there had been immediate tragedy on the scale of what I just described.
They protected that particular part of our innocence for a long while and I am grateful.
Because within five years several of my friends died and I had my eyes opened as to how tenuous our grip on life can be.
Blood In Places You’d Rather Not Bleed From
Sometimes you find blood in places you’d rather not bleed from and think, “that is kind of interesting. Maybe I ought to schedule that physical.”
Hit the ThirstyLion Gastropub as planned today and was very pleased. I will go back again.
Took the daughter back to her first soccer practice of the new season, picked up her glasses and then went to the gym before the big lightning show outside dumped 999 gallons of rain upon me.
Put on some workout music and hit the weights hard, smiled harder because for the second consecutive night my body responded as it should.
I may not look as I want to but dammit it is getting easier to throw some real weight around and that makes me happy.
Don’t know why, but something about being able to lift the heavy stuff makes me really happy. Maybe it is because for so many years I tried to be able to do what the old man could do and couldn’t.
Truth is when puberty started to really kick in the muscle came quickly and easily. I don’t have to work real hard at putting muscle on.
Getting cut is a different story, but we’ll save that nonsense for later.
In the midst of the chaos, confusion and upheaval I obviously have had ample time to think and consider this and that.
There are some conversations to be had and decisions to be made. I am about done with some things and some people.
Time to cull the herd some more. I have never required a million or a hundred friends. Don’t need 50 0r 25, just a few good ones and I’m good.
That is not to say there is anything wrong with having a larger support group because there is not.
But the more I think about the silence from some people the more obvious it becomes that it will grow unless I am the one to fix it.
And I am not willing to do the one sided fix.