The man in the mirror looks at me and shakes his head but I am not sure why.
Is it because my little sister told me that at almost 46 I can’t keep up with my nephew’s high school football team and I disagree.
Or is it because I spent a large chunk of the day feeling like I haven’t a clue anymore as to what I am supposed to do with myself.
Could be one or the other but it is probably both.
The man I am and the man I once was aren’t willing to accept that we/I are too old to run with the high school boys the way we used to.
I am prepared to say I can’t do the workout today but it is nonsense to say I can’t get myself in shape for it. Nonsense to say that I am beyond the point where I can’t run with those boys.
It is not a question of can I do it but will I.
The man in the mirror agrees with me on this point and we decide that even though it is something that is driven by ego it is a realistic option.
Coffee With Bruce Springsteen
The man in the mirror gives me a look I know far too well. It is the one that is reserved for those who wallow in pity and aren’t willing to pick themselves up and move.
He tells me we have gotten punched in the mouth before and kept fighting. Â Reminds me that we have always given as good as we have gotten and that we aren’t the kind of fellows who crawl under the blanket to hide.
I tell him bravado only works when you can back it up and he laughs.
“We can, and we have. Suck it up.”
Pour myself an extra large coffee and turn on Tunnel of Love. The Boss is singing One Step Up and I am nodding my head because one step up and two steps back is exactly how it feels like life is going now.
My daughter points out that a few grey hairs are popping up in places on my head and I smile.
“You gave me those”
She shakes her head and tells me that I can’t blame her for me going grey and tell her that she is responsible for me losing my hair too and I shake my head.
“I can, I have and I did.”
She giggles and runs into the other room and I wave goodbye.
In a few I’ll finish writing down a few thoughts and it will be time to bang out some more pushups but not because I have to keep up with those high school boys but because I need the exercise for me.
It is part of how I clear my head.
The Beginning Of The Story
In many ways this blog has been the master chronicle of the changes and adjustments my life has gone through.
It is where I figured out that things were off track and where I worked out how to adjust, pivot and sidestep my way back.
You can look through the posts here and find snapshots in time where I was happy and moments where I was miserable.
I remember the moments of misery because some have been recent and because I am lucky enough to be one of those people who remembers the scrapes and bruises.
But I remember the highlights and great happiness too.
Stephen King says it is a good thing.
It helps when I write my stories and create my characters.
When I look at everything, all of the posts that make up this blog and all of the moments of my life I see now as the beginning of the story.
Sometimes it frustrates me because I wish I could have known all this years ago so that I could have made some changes.
Don’t bother with the comment about how all of these experiences have made me who I am because I know that and I am not in the mood.
Some days I listen to those platitudes and shake my head yes and sometimes I take my gorilla hands to your neck and squeeze off your head.
Blame this crazy feeling now on the tick-tocking of the clock I hear inside my head. Don’t know where it came from or why but it is there and I am very aware of how fast it all goes.
The funny thing is I am still convinced that I am going to be around for another 5o years or more but that is not enough time for me.
There is so much I want to do and experience.
I have a very clear vision inside my head about the life I want to lead and what I want to do.
If you were to step inside you’d see a vast hall and the images running through it and you’d know what I want and how I am trying to get there.
But that doesn’t mean I have never suffered from self-doubt or asked hard questions.
Today was one of those days where the man in the mirror and I fought about whether that vision is smart, silly or sensible.
Bruce is singing about that Tunnel of Love now and I am bouncing my head back and forth. I was in college when the album came out and it has carried me through more than a few moments in time.
It has been a part of helping me to decipher the whispering of heart and head and I am hopeful it can do it again.
What A Father Does
When my children ask what a father does I want them to understand it is more than just help provide food and shelter.
It is values and it is an understanding that when you don’t like the story of your life you have the will to change it.
And you keep going even if it is three steps up and two steps back.