A new week....

Is always a welcome thing as it signals a new beginning. I hope this will become a good week. Yesterday we found out that Tam no longer has pneumonia and therefore I can reschedule her appointment with her surgeon. That means another step towards her coming home. We still have not received nor heard anything regarding her medicaid application but hopefully soon we will. Yesterday I had a good time with my daughter even though all we did was move some stuff to the storage shed and dig out some of her things. It was still good to spend some time with her. I am more disappointed than ever in my step-daughter. She was supposed to call Tam Friday night but for some reason did not. I was told that she does have a phone card and yet she still did not call. This is going to be Tam's undoing more than anything else. She is now sad that she will never again be able to shoot hoops with her daughter and for that matter with any grandchildren we may someday have. Why is she abandoning her mother? Is this so stressful that she would rather ignore her mother than deal with it? How can she do this to her mother? Is the disappointment that she caused by turning to drugs like her father so bad in her mind that she would rather abandon her than face her? Does she not understand that just because you disappointment a parent does not mean you lose their love? A real, loving parent loves without question, without conditions. That is why they call it unconditional love. And yet she goes on with her life, not allowing her mother to be a part of that life and it just tears a little bit of Tammi apart each day. Laura is playing mother to her boyfriends children and Tam cannot be a part of that experience. This is not fair to her. She just needs to remember what goes around comes around.



Is that a word? I think it is. It describes my emotional state right now. I am perplexed because there is so much that I do not know and I should know, need to know. I need to know when I should stand up for myself regarding my feelings towards certain issues in my marriage and when I should just let things be. I felt like I was completely disrespected before and it wore on me as more and more time went by. But yet, is not my wife's health and mental well being more important right now than my own feelings? I think so but yet I just cannot go through what I previously did go through the last time her mother came to live with us. I need my wife to stand up for my feelings and at the same time I need to put her needs above my own. Where the middle ground on all this is I do not know but I will keep searching for it.



That is how I describe the latest news regarding Tam. Yesterday she was moved to the long-term wing. This is a good thing because it means she will continue to get the care she needs as she recovers and gains strength. But it also means she will not be coming home soon. Of course I want her to get better, I want her to be the best she can be whenever she does come home but at the same time it is saddening. We both feel this way. But we just have to continue to believe that she will heal to the point where she can come home. Right now we have to get her past this pneumonia so that she can proceed with future surgeries. It is strange, she is the strongest she has been in over a year and yet you can tell she is not well. For spurts and short periods she is fine but she tires easily and then she gets to coughing and you know that congestion is there. We are now 3 weeks delayed on future procedures and I do not know how much more time will be needed but I would guess several weeks. The weak cannot fight off infections and sickness like a healthy person can. It is an eye-opening experience. That is why I eat right and exercise, I owe it to her to be the best I can be.


Why do we do what we do?

Not a really good title for this entry but all I could come up with on short notice. Why do I like to blog? I really don't know. Yeah I do know. I always wanted to be like JohnBoy from The Waltons tv show, keep a journal of my life. But I never had the patience as a child to do this. Now, I seem to be better equipped in that department but just have trouble organizing my thoughts into a more organized format. I am continuing to strive to evolve as a person and part of that is putting my thoughts down. I wish I had more time to better organize my thoughts for constructive commentary. There is so much going on in our world and in today's world it is possible for everyone to have a voice, even if no one is there to hear it. I could spend all day every day commenting on things ranging from sports to politics to movies but I just don't have the time. I have always wanted to do everything and ended up not doing anything because I could not decide. I have been learning this over the past 20 years but now I am truly figuring it out. I have to pick something that interests me and stick with that and only that because there just is not the time to do anything else. A year or two ago I read an article about a professor that has spent his life studying Mark Twain. His whole adult life. This was his passion. I want to know so much, learn so much that I can never pick that one thing and focus on it. I have missed so much because I tried to do so much instead of just one thing really well. Now what do I do? If a person picks one thing and strives to be really good at it they will succeed. Even if they don't do it well, they will do it well enough to make a living. I believe this. Where to go now? I have been getting into downloading podcasts and listening to them at work. But I download far more than I can listen to so they pile up. I like Dan Patrick so I listen to him. I need to just do a few instead of trying to get all that there is. But I feel that there will be another one that I will enjoy listening to so I keep downloading. But I will succeed in learning to limit to a few. I will say that the combination of a laptop, wifi, and a coffee shop is a good thing. gotta go to work now.



32 lives lost. Tens of thousands shattered. All by one young man, a troubled young man it seems after reading articles about him. All victims of his acts. But who, or what, is he a victim of? Peer pressure? Parental pressure? Society in general? Random gene selection? All of this, or any other reason does not excuse him for what he did. But it still begs the question, what was he a victim of that led him to do this? Everyone will want to vilify him for what he did, I surely would had it happened to my 17 year old child but yet there has to be more to it than just someone that wanted to kill others. There has to be a reason as to why he snapped and when he ultimately did snap. For every guilty person of a crime, that person is also a victim of someone or something else. No act happens truly by random chance. Something led to that act happening. It is reported that he wrote of molestation by a step-parent, does that mean he was molested or was he just using the story as a way to get attention, shock value? What was he a victim of that led him to lash out in a way that put him in power? My wife told me of a friend she had that was in a very controlling verbally and physically abusing relationship. This woman was very thin and tiny and could not defend herself from her husband. So what she did was starve herself. The on control she had left in her life, the on bit of power left to her was the ability to refuse to eat. We don't know if she is still alive or if she is still in that relationship but it goes to show that whenever someone feels powerless to stop some type of pain being afflicted upon them, they will find something to retain some sort of control. I believe that if you were to ask a prisoner of war they would say the same thing. I am glad I have not had to endure anything as severe as that but right now my wife does. She is confined to a bed and is in constant pain. The few things she still has control over is her tv. It has become so important to her because of what she cannot do that she retain something that she does have control over. Something or someone had such control over this young man that he finally lashed back out and said I have the control now. Unfortunately he had to alter our world to take that control back into his life. I pray for the families of the people he hurt and for his family.


Maybe things are finally going in positive direction. Two days ago I saw the Medicaid counselor that the nursing home sent me to. He was a very nice, helpful young man that gave me some good direction and assistance as he did not charge me the $150 that his sessions usually cost. Now while I am sure they have a way to write that off it still is income that he passed up and it greatly benefits Tam and I. I will use that to help fix her car and pay bills. I spent the majority of yesterday copying, printing, and filling out the forms and documents for our application. Once finished I went to see Tam and turn in the application. The nursing home office manager said they trust this man so much that if he says we qualify, they take his word as gold and allow you to stay while the application is processed, which takes 30-90 days. He told me that based upon our assets and income, or rather lack thereof, we would have no problem qualifying. So, this is good news. I want her home in a bad way and she wants to be home but if she is to come home as healthy as she can, she needs to be in the nursing home where she can get the physical therapy she needs to walk again. She needs her arms to work better and be stronger. I just cannot give her that. I try to do all that I can and it is never enough, there is always more that needs to be done. We will be moving in 3 months so that we can be much closer to my work and that will mean more help since I will go from spending $6 a day on gas to less than $2. Fuel adds up quickly. Speaking of the cost of fuel, I have been really studying my spending habits. As I have learned to look for hidden calories and carbs in my food I have applied the same attention to finances. There are so many hidden costs that we just don't think about. Yesterday I needed to download 4 bank statements for Tam's account and 4 for mine. As we do not have internet at home I went to this cafe I had just learned about in Grapevine that offers free wifi. It is about a 7-8 mile drive to it, which is closer to me than the coffee shops by my work. But the $2 cup of coffee is not the only expense I have. thinking about what it costs, I realized that with gas @ $2.75 a gallon and it takes a gallon to get there and back, that $2 cup of coffee now cost nearly $6. For yesterday's needs it was worth it and since it is on my way whenever I work at the Grapevine store the cost is eliminated but to just drive up there to goof off the cost is now too high. I can't wait to move since there are none of these coffee/cafe shops around where I live but there is 2 of them within a mile of my work. Yes, things are looking up.


Stress. It will be my undoing. Yesterday was a day filled with it. First, I have people at work coming at me from all directions wanting things done that I just don't have time to do. Then I get a text message from Tammi saying she has pneumonia. So I call her and she is just beside herself in tears. She cannot get hold of her daughter and she feels she is going to die without having a chance to speak to her. I left early so I could spend some time with her and when I arrived she was in the physical therapy room working on her leg strength. The nurses said this was good for her and will aid in overcoming her latest illness. Once we reuturned to her room she let it all out, which I think was for the best but she is really struggling mentally. Overall we had a good evening. But that did not last for me as when I got home my daughter called. She and her grandfather were having an argument and while I believe there is much validity to his side, he just cannot handle things that way. I warned both of them of my worries about her living there with her grandparents and it did not take long for them to come true. Yelling did not work for my sister and I and it will not work for my daughter. She is more calm today and feels she has been hired for a job so maybe that will be the end of that. I am working on coaching her on how to handle people. I wished I had had someone to do that for me when I was young but maybe that is my purpose righ now, to teach her what I am learning. I am trying to be an open person not afraid to learn different ways and if I can teach her that, I will have accomplished something. Even though I feel a failure as a father, I do think there will always be an opportunity to change that and ultimately succeed. The final verdict over whether I succeed or fail cannot be decided until my life is over. Each day carries with it a new opportunity to reverse a past failure. Only time will tell on that.

On another front, I am so far behind the curve on time management but I am learning how to do that also. As I right this I am sitting in a lobby of a building waiting to see a medicaid counselor. I recently discovered the benefit if using the “hibernate” function on my laptop instead of fully shutting it down as it restarts very quickly whenever I do that. So, while I wait for my appointment I am getting some blogging in. Later I will upload to google tools and then publish to my blog. Really cool. I rarely watch tv, instead doing other things and saving tv for the weekends. I have decided that I would rather spend a weekend watching a box set of some tv series than one hour a week. I know that means a current series will be a year or more old when I do finally watch it, but it really cool to see it from start to finish in 3 days or less. I think I will subscribe to a Netflix account this week. I just finished seasons one and two of Battlestar Galactica and it really is the way to go.



Is the first day of going forward. I picked up my daughter today and she is back home where she belongs. She sure seems to have matured and understands she is on her last chance. I hope it sticks this time. I will work as hard as I can to keep her in line but it ultimately will come down to her and the choices she makes. Tammi is not doing so well today. She has developed an upper respiratory problem with coughing and congestion. This is not a welcome thing as she is in no shape to fight off any kind of infection. I hope this is just allergies and that it passes soon.


Another month....

Has come and gone. More of the same and yet new things just around the corner. My daughter will be coming home (sort of, she is going to live with her grandparents) within the next few weeks. That is exciting but I just hope she can be strong and stay away from the elements that caused her to be taken away from us. I have missed most of her teenage years and I fully blame myself. If I had not spent so much effort in finding someone for me, I might have done a better job of raising her. But perhaps not, and I have developed some positive relationships and friends along the way. I surely would not know some of the things I know had I not made the choices I made. But it is time to make good choices, both the ones she makes and the ones I make. I sincerely hope I am strong enough to make them so that maybe, just maybe, I can set an example for her to follow as she leaves childhood and enters adulthood. I am just excited that she will be getting out and that I can spend some time with her. Work is going fine for the most part and I am more and more accepting my place and role there. That is making for less pressure and therefore more productivity while I am working. Unless things drastically change, I will be there for as long as I want to be there. I should be moving into a larger office as we have combined our Lincoln/Mercury dealer with our Ford dealership. That means for us at the Nissan facility, we have two buildings to work with and the managers will be moving next door. I should be able to get one of their old offices before too much longer. That will be a welcome relief as that will give me considerably more room but more importantly I will no longer be next to the shop and all the noises associated with it. Sometimes you just need some quiet to be able to concentrate and think. Saw the doctor today to have some blood drawn to check to see how I am responding to the medications he had given me. I still feel really great and should see some improvement. A week from this coming Thursday my wife has another appointment with the surgeon, this time to begin deciding on what next to treat and when the treatment (surgery) will be performed. She is getting better but she is also quite tired of being bedridden. Hopefully by the end of the summer she will be finished and we can get on with life.