I did it for the children. Those are words that I wrote 18 months ago. By themselves they are virtually meaningless but when read in the conjunction with the rest of the post there is so much more there.
You see I am reading that post and shaking my head because I saw what was coming and did my best to plan for it but it didn’t matter. Didn’t matter because there was no way to stop some things from happening. No way to prevent circumstance, happenstance and shit house luck from coming together in a perfect storm. I described it then like this:
I cannot win. There is a minuscule chance that things will go my way, but I am not real hopeful. This experience has been dreadful. It has been damaging, harmful and hurtful in ways that are still yet to be felt.
That is an awful way to describe a situation. It sounds so dire and hopeless. I am not that guy. I am not the man who gives up and I hate sounding like I did because I didn’t. I haven’t.
All that I have done is my best to take a bad situation and turn it around. Ultimately I think that time will show that I did it. Things got really bad and I think they have improved but there is a price to pay. I mentioned it above and I think I am paying it.
What Have I Accomplished?
Sometimes I find myself compiling a list of my accomplishments. It is a good list but it falls far short of where I want it to be. When I try to determine if I am being too hard on myself I try to imagine what I would tell my children if they came to me with this.
I picture the year 2032 and stare at kids who are in their twenties and thirties. They want dad to tell them it is going to be alright. They want dad to say that they made good choices and that all will work out.
My response is simple. I tell them they did some amazing things and remind them we can’t control life we can only manage it. I tell them that our attitude impacts everything and that they have choices to wallow or to push through.
Yes some things are hard and unfair but that is how life is. When you push through to the other side it will feel good and you will feel like you really accomplished something because not everyone keeps going when things get tough. I’ll tell them that I don’t know how I did it all because I don’t.
I made a lot of mistakes and got lucky too. But more than anything else the reason I made it was that I just kept going and did my best to make the best out of everything.
Damn, that sounds pretty good. Hell, maybe they ought to give me Father of the Year for the Father’s Day. It would make a great gift.
Where Is Your Focus?
Damn blog crashed while I was writing this so the tone might feel a bit different than before but the message is still pretty close to the same. The question of focus is tied into accomplishment. It is me asking what is important. It is me saying that if you don’t know how to feed your soul and help fill your heart you will feel empty regardless of what you have.
Some years ago I would have called it new age bullshit but I have come to believe it. Experience has taught me that there is a truth there that I cannot ignore. So when I look at this period of time and think about how awful it has been I also smile because it has helped me figure out some really important things.
What hurts me is knowing that my kids have gone through some rough spots because of me. Not to mention that my ego is bruised and I hate knowing that some bad people have made a lot of money because of what I did. I don’t think about it often because I won’t give them free rent in my head.
But I won’t lie and say that I don’t wish for them to lose everything either.
My children love music.I take some responsibility for that. We never go a day without listening to something together. I make a point to expose them to many different types. I tell them to read anything and everything and to listen to…everything.
Sometimes I find them just dancing with reckless abandon and I smile. How can you not. They are joy incarnate. The dark haired beauty tells me she is going to write a love song just because she wants to and not because she has a crush on some boy.
Her older brother tells me she is lying. She screams at him, he laughs. Later she will share his secret and laugh while he screams. They are typical siblings but they like each other and if I have my way they always will.
I guess I must have done something right, but dammit, there has to be an easier way to get there than this. This is part of Just Write #38.