Sorry this is so late. Nearly a month has passed, since you hit this milestone, and I have struggled to find the right words to say.
Boy2, 16 years have passed since you came into my life, and the path you are on is beginning to slowly pull you out into your own orbit. You have graced all of us with your presence, and it has been at times, entertaining, at times frustrating.
You are the one that I worry most about at times, you carry your emotions inside, releasingthem in a torrent of feelings that seem to overwealm you.
But you are simply one of the most loving and caring individuals I have ever seen. You have a sense of social justice that amazes me. You make good friends and they seem to stick. People seem drawn to you, you give of a sense of fun that is contagious.
You have helped make this whole transition of life changing events easier for me to bear, without even knowing it.
Your love of music is great, you like obscure bands, and will give just about anything a chance. You have talent in this area, but i get the sense, that you pursue this for the sheer joy of it not for any outward reasons.
You march to the beat of your own drummer, in a place where conformity is the rule, you stand out, comfortable in your own skin, and carry yourself with a quiet confidence that I never had.
Happy belated birthday, and keep reaching for those dreams.
Nope, not possible, you can't be, you are still a little kid aren't you?
Sigh, i guess not. you are a teenager, on the verge of becoming a young man, a damn fine one from the looks of it.
You have a big heart, a ready smile, a generally happy attitude, and the attention span of a mosquito. Just kidding! You make me smile and laugh and push my buttons in a way no one else can. You love music and hockey and skyrim and who knows what else? You approach life with a seize the day attitude, actually more like a beat the day into submission one. There are no half way measures about you. You make friends easily and are pretty loyal to them. As you have matured you are slowly learning the fine art of compromise, and your ability to see both sides of an argument is developing. You have a strong sense of social justice, and are happy that the charity group you belong to is doing some good.
You are becoming a fine young man, and you were already a pretty damn good teenager, your are still one, just with better colored hair*.
1) Be born early, on your brother's 3rd birthday, just because you wanted to be around for Christmas. Live in one city for 3 years, move to another just in time for your younger sister to be born.
2) Start 1st grade in one school, begin at another right after Christmas, meet the person who has been your closest friend for 37 years, settle i9n to the house where 47 years later your mother still lives. start playing hockey.
3) continue with school hockey and those type of activities until you are 13, join Air Cadets, and meet some of the people who to this day make the short list of friends that have remained. Start High school, struggle to fit in, meet the teacher who who help, listen and keep me going, even though some of us tormented the crap out him constantly.
3) In the last year of high school discover Punk music, adopt the punk style of dress, partially alienate your brother, pierce your ear, wear lots of black, graduate from High school, and realize you have no clue what to do next, decide to go back to high school for more credits.
4) Never finish that extra year, leave for basic training with 7 days left to the year, start a career that will take you away from home, move to Nova Scotia, reconnect with old friends , spend some time at sea, meet your future wife, move in with her, pack everything up and move with your now wife to Northern Alberta.
5) meet new friends, have first son 1 year after moving here, second son 19 months later, 3rd son 23 months after that. wait 10 months , have mild medical crisis with 3rd son, get through it, and then 7 months later pack up family and move to BC.
6) Get to BC fed up with career, request change, get change, 11 months after being in BC move to Ontario, begin training for new military occupation, family begins to settle into new home. Finish training, cracks begin to appear in marriage ignore, and hope for best, deploy overseas for 6 months, come back home, some things appear better, career progress nicely, accept posting to new location without consulting wife, cracks appear again.
7) Father passes away. Move to new city, tiny city , kids unhappy, wife very unhappy, F**k it nobody happy, wonder how to fix it, 1 year later, get removed from house, move into 6X8 foot room, realize that the end of marriage is nearing, try to stay in area, concession made prepare to move 4 hrs away.
8) Move away, realize marriage is truly over, miss kids terribly, lean on family for support, much chaos ensues, older brother steps in and helps, older sister helps, little sister helps, brother in law proves to be true friend, kids begin to adjust. Me not so much.
9) sign agreement, fell depressed, buy new car and begin to get better feeling about life, move on, start new life(somewhat), realize I could be all right. get out of debt. Begin over.
Any questions? If you get lost, ask I'll come find you
TAKING THE LONG WAY ROUND--THE DIXIE CHICKS
My friends from high school Married their high school boyfriends Moved into houses in the same ZIP codes Where their parents live
But I, I could never follow No I, I could never follow
I hit the highway in a pink RV with stars on the ceiling Lived like a gypsy Six strong hands on the steering wheel
I've been a long time gone now Maybe someday, someday I'm gonna settle down But I've always found my way somehow
By taking the long way Taking the long way around Taking the long way Taking the long way around
I met the queen of whatever Drank with the Irish and smoked with the hippies Moved with the shakers Wouldn't kiss all the asses that they told me to
No I, I could never follow No I, I could never follow
It's been two long years now Since the top of the world came crashing down And I'm getting' it back on the road now
But I'm taking the long way Taking the long way around I'm taking the long way Taking the long way around The long The long way around
Well, I fought with a stranger and I met myself I opened my mouth and I heard myself It can get pretty lonely when you show yourself Guess I could have made it easier on myself
But I, I could never follow No I, I could never follow
Well, I never seem to do it like anybody else Maybe someday, someday I'm gonna settle down If you ever want to find me I can still be found
Taking the long way Taking the long way around Taking the long way Taking the long way around
Son1 took his first step on the road to adulthood yesterday, By getting his Learner's permit. He is now able to drive, with of course, me or his mom in the passenger seat.
This day has been coming for some time now, but I find I have mixed feelings about it.
On the one hand I am proud of him, I know he has wanted this for some time, and truth be told, I believe that he will be a good and safe driver, I have no worries about him being stupid or dangerous behind the wheel. He is somewhat cautious and I think his natural tendency to be safe will keep other desires in check. I also believe that he will not succumb to any peer pressure to be stupid when he has his full license.
On the other hand, part of me resists this, he is my son, the first born, and this milestone is one that begins his journey away from us, it seems too soon, in a year he will be in college, and beginning to navigate his life away from us, and making his own way into the world. It's not that I'm overly worried about him, It's more like I don't like change.
He and I struggled to find a relationship in the aftermath of the separation, and it took time, but we are better now, as he has gotten older, and I have lightened up, we found the common ground that kept us going and the strain between us has lessened. He is a great kid, Scratch that, he is a wonderful young man, and I see the potential in him, untapped, waiting.
Drive safe Son, But always remember, to come home.
There are several things that I want to get off my back, and the next couple of posts are going to tackle them.
The first thing, is not necessarily a new thing but I have read and heard about it quite a lot lately so I figured I'd get my two cents in.
Helicopter parents, you know, the ones who won't leave their child alone to do anything for even a minute because well, you know, the world is just so dangerous.
These are the same ones who look at you as if you are the worst parent in the world if you don't subscribe to the same theories that they do, whatever.
People, crime rates are actually down, and unless your child has special needs, there is no reason to constantly hover around them. If you don't let them do things on their own, and occasionally fail, they are never going to learn how to figure things out by themselves.
I know of young men and women, who have joined the military and whose parents are still trying to fix whatever they can for them. Really? I would have been pretty angry with my mom if she had called one of my instructors to see if they would ease up on us so we could get better sleep. Which has happened to a friend of mine. No seriously, a parent called him up to complain that she did not believe that her son was getting enough sleep, because her son mentioned to her that they were so busy with homework, etc that they were not getting to bed before midnight most nights. To his credit my friend handled it gracefully, and refrained from pointing out the obvious, that her son was an adult, and had to learn to handle this on his own.
I have heard and read stories of parents calling universities to complain about their kids grades. I have a news flash for you, the only one responsible for the grade is your child, either they study, and get good grades or they don't and get what they get.
On another web forum I belong to one parent said that if she was at a playground, she would ask parents of older children to stop doing things in front of her children that they couldn't do. Meaning if her kids were not old or physically developed enough to do something she didn't want kids who could to do it out of a fear that her kids would attempt to emulate the older kids. Whatever, good thing that she was never around me at a park, I would have laughed, my youngest tried to emulate his older brothers all the time, I did not try to hold him back, because I think that trying to keep up with them gave him the motivation to try things at an earlier age.
I know some parents who are so scared of the effects of sun that their son is basically covered from head to toe in some kind of full body suit at the beach, might as well stay indoors. Even the experts are saying we need some sun on us for the vitamin D.
Another thing that is getting on my nerves is the commercials for those drinks to ensure your kids are getting enough vitamins, nutrition because they are picky eaters, really, I was a bit of a picky eater when I was a kid, there was no way my mom would have just given me those drinks, I'm not saying I was forced to eat everything, but I was told that I had to try some of everything. Stop catering to the demands of your kid, and do your job as a parent. Letting a miniature tyrant control you is setting a bad precedent.
On a related note, I am tired of hearing from some media outlets about how dangerous and bad teenagers are. I have 3 and they are not bad, neither are their friends, give it a rest already.
Next time, I'll lighten it up with some tales of the goofiest dogs in the world.
Sorry to be away for so long, but I had a very busy and great summer(mostly).
The boys and I spent time camping, fishing, beaching(is that a word?, it is now) sailing and just generally hanging out.
This summer gave me the chance to reacquaint myself with old friends( HI DANA), meet new ones (HI CARMEN) and spend time with people who have known me my whole life, and who I love as much as my parents (SANDRA AND DAN< LOVE YOU BOTH).
The demons that have haunted me for the past 4 years are slowly receding, with the support of friends and family, the dawn is beginning to break, and my life is slowly becoming mine again.
Geez, that was sappy wasn't it on to more happy things.
Dana, it was so great to see you, and to feel as if the years have not passed at all, it was a pleasure to meet your wonderful daughter.
To my sons, thanks for a great summer, the fact that you willingly spent time with me , camping etc, means more to me than you know, you three are the light in my life , the pull that has kept me on the path.
To my siblings, thanks, I cannot believe sometimes, that every single time i have needed you, you have been there.
My brother in law , M, thank you, you are one of my best friends in the world, you have shared your love of sailing, and spread it to my boys as well, you have one of the most generous souls I know.
And finally to Boy1, as you are entering your last year of High School, Enjoy this year, you have grown so much, in some ways the boy is gone, the man in you shines through, and I have to say I like what I see. Stay true to your dreams and beliefs as you always have done, and I have no doubt that you will go far, and shine whatever you choose to do.
Stay tuned, and in the next few posts, I have plans to tackle helicopter parents, stupid reality TV, flying around this country, Newts on the patio, and my mom's dog.