Settling into an Era

As I approach the five-year mark of my anniversary to Lena, a few things have become obvious: this is here to stay, and the past is the past (and it should remain in the past).

A couple of things have happened lately that bring this full-circle. Firstly, David has moved out-of-state to start a new life with his girlfriend. This happened several months ago, but my contact with him remains to be a bit limited. Perhaps this is just part of growing-up and finding his own way. Still, this is the new reality, having less contact with him, especially now that he has moved outside California.

Second, my old house on Elderwood was up for sale a couple of weeks ago and there was an open house that Sunday. I was very anxious to see it in person, after having lived there for 14 years. In most of the pictures on-line, there was evidence of my own hard work from whence I once lived there. It started to bring back a flood of memories and experiences, from my previous marriage, and from when my kids were younger. They were happy times, the starting of a young family, but certainly not without its issues. I did not want to “revisit” the house where memories are in the past with my ex-wife, so, the more I thought about it, the more I decided it was best to not go and just leave it in the past. That was then, this is now.

Lastly, I was going through some boxes in the garage just yesterday as I start to embark on yet another home project. I came across a box I had packed from moving from Fig Tree. We have lived at the new house for a year-and-a-half now, and this was probably the last unopened box. The box was marked “Firebird”, so I knew that it had a car model of a Firebird that David and I never put together :( But then I found a bunch of other papers and envelopes and postcards. At first I didn’t recognize it, but then I realized they were from my penpal in Finland. I was amazed at how much she had written me or sent me postcards from her travels.

The letters dated from 1997 to 2005. While I was curious to read through them, it was re-living memories that had no place in my life any more. I have moved on. In a very real way, it was bittersweet, because I had been writing her since about 1992. I glanced at a few letters, and most started off with “Sorry I find it so hard to write lately….”, which clearly shows that the long-distance relationship was not meant to be. It was once a fantasy to go to Finland and meet her – which still could happen some day – but now it is different. I have settled into a relationship that I have had for some 17(!) years now (having just past our 17th anniversary mark of our first “date”).

Things are different now, and while I once was adamant about holding on to these memories, they belong in the past. Even the last few emails (2013?) were a bit of a struggle. She has moved on with her life, and me with mine. While I will always enjoy the escape she gave me from my life and marriage at the time, they are now just memories of the past. I don’t believe you can totally “trash” the past (or the person) since you did at one time have nice memories of that person, whether it be a penpal or an ex-wife. After viewing a few sentences here or there, it was time to permanently delete these letters and postcards … and they were all shredded. Bittersweet, but it isn’t “right” to hold on to them unless I amĀ in a relationship with that person.

Life goes on.

TV Ain’t Like It Used To Be

I was watching late night TV the other night. Lena had gone to bed and OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI was doing some channel surfing. Some show caught my eye and it got me thinking, and triggered an avalanche of thoughts of TV shows I used to watch growing up. So many shows gave me fond memories of my childhood and teenage years and made me realize that TV shows today just don’t have the lasting impact as the ones of yesteryear. They just don’t make then as they used to!

Gone are the days of black and white TVs with rabbit ears and manual dial. Gone are the days where you could count the number of available channels on one hand, and half of those would sign off the air at midnight after playing the National Anthem. Gone are the days where families circled around the TV and enjoyed good wholesome entertainment together.

Initially my thoughts were, “What are the top three uniquely creative TV shows in my youth. I quickly came up with were:home_improvement

mork_mindy

married_childrenNot necessarily the first three other people might think of, but I recall many, many times where the level of humor of the shows were simply original and made me laugh like I had not laughed in a long, long time. Mork & Mindy with Robin William’s quirky quick wit was simply one of a kind. No one could even touch his creative style! Home Improvement was original in it’s own right with a growing family and the mishaps of “Tim the Toolman Taylor”. Married With Children was so cutting edge with it’s off-center humor, such as we have not seen the likes of since All In The Family. The bumbling husband trying to make ends-meet with his dysfunctional family. No matter what happened and how many pretty women came into his shoe store, he was just a regular guy dedicated to his crazy family.

This got me thinking (always a dangerous thing to do! lol) about some of the really iconic movies that I used to love so much growing up. The more I thought about it, the longer the list grew – so rather than make it an endless task, I decided to just list the ones that came first to my mind…

Superman-TV-Show-1952 my_three_sons my_favorite_martian mayberry_rfd HoneymoonersBW i_love_lucyleave_it_to_beaver lost_in_space gilligan's_island adamms_family

I really miss these old shows. There hasn’t been anything on TV even close since then!

Already?

Already it has been two months into the new year, and I can’t believe this is my first post of the year! Great Scott! I think in some ways I have slipped into a sort of coma. Life has been passing me by as I try to keep up with the daily stress of life, drama and business with work. I’ve actually been going through a slight depression, and last night was no exception. Taxes. Ughh,

A lot has happened in the last two months. busySo why haven’t I blogged. I don’t know. I wouldn’t say it is because I don’t care – because I do. I just get busy with work, and try to keep up with everything around me, but sometimes it is just overwhelming.

Sometimes I just tire of the drama I see on Facebook, especially between cousins. I am SO GLAD I removed D & D – I certainly do not need their soured opinions and disparity. I have also dropped a few other ‘friends’ from HS that I certainly do not need. It is not that I don’t mind other opinions or views. But I don’t need to feel “beat up” from someone just because I share a different view point! This happened with D & D, along with a few others. So then I get to a point and ask myself – is it me? Am I the one that cannot get along with others? All my life, I have been passive, shy, the nice guy, and complacent. I am usually happy no matter what the circumstances or situation. So I dropped out of FB for two or three weeks, and quite honestly, I don’t think anyone even noticed.

The last couple of months have seen their share of ups-and-downs with work. I’ve been on a big project, and have been the project lead for this, carrying the brunt of the weight of the project on my shoulders. I’ve received some help from a contractor, but very little help from co-workers. After all, it’s not their project. My appraisal went as expected – the usual average rating and disclaimer that there is no money in the budget for raises. If I wasn’t this close to retiring (~10 years) I would probably bail and look elsewhere, but good jobs with good benefits are hard to find.

On the positive side, I am finally working in Walnut Creek now. It’s only taken five months to get moved here!

On the family side, I continue to hear from David infrequently. Just when I am about to write him off, I hear from him. He’s been on his own cell phone plan since January, and he’s called once. Up to that time, I was always the one texting him to see how he was doing. Sometimes I just get tired of being the one to pursue relationships.

As far as friends go, Daryl and I had a falling-out a couple of years ago. Though we had our differences, I miss that connection back to days when life was simpler and less stressful. I may contact him in the near future.

I had a good thing going with Ira for a while. Now that he is retired and traveling back-and-forth to Austin to see his kids and grand kids, he has kind of left me in the dust. This is a little surprising considering how he used to comment about others vacating friendships. The last couple of times we met, he had very limited time, and/or his wife would come get him after an hour. It reminds me of how you drop your kids off at the babysitter’s while you go out to a movie with your date, and then come back and pick-up the kids….

As for the home front, I feel things are going great with ‘the wife’. We are communicating well, and discussing mutual goals. This is important to me to be on the same page without debate with the one I live with 24×7! We have recently decided to remodel our kitchen and are both very excited to see how it turns out! This is huge, since neither of us have done such a big change to our homes, and now we get to do it together :)

Lena’s mom just moved this last weekend also. We are happy that she has been able to get into a place that is more affordable. All the siblings were there, and it was a joint effort to get her moved.

Alas, I bought a new bike and I am anxious to go for some casual rides out in the country area. It’s been a bit too cold to ride it lately, and have only put about 6-8 miles on it. I now have all the gear I need and I am ready to ride! I might get a small pack to go it for some items to carry, but that is about it.

Health wise, everything seems to be stable, though I feel I should be consuming more greens. Hopefully once the kitchen remodel is done, I can get back on track with this. I also want to continue with my New Year goals of eating healthier, more smoothies (berry and green), and cooking more. Time to get out that slow cooker and do some veggies!

I think the general feeling I was having when I began this post is this: I have felt abandoned. Kids do not talk to me (one never, one rarely), and my old work buddies have slowly disappeared into the woodwork. That is why I have reached-out to Daryl and try to make amends. Yeah, he’s weird. But he’s my weird friend. We have a long history going back, and I don’t want to completely abandon a friendship if it can make me a little more social. We are planning on some chess over coffee this weekend. I will, of course, bring up some of the past. But mostly, it is water under the bridge. I have learned to forgive and forget.

I just wish I didn’t feel alone/depressed so much. Why is that….? Sometimes these haunting feelings are just nagging feelings that slowly evaporate. Maybe it is easier for me to forgive, but not forget ….