I am going to vanquish my winter blues. It is too much self–indulgence. My pets love me (and my wife). And that is enough. My favorite dog, Tilla, ‘adores’ me, in the words of my daughter. I did nothing to deserve all that. And that is an incomplete list of the seven cats and two dogs who each love me in their own way. My pets do not care what I do or am. And my wife does not care about the degree I do not have, or job for that matter.

‘Home is where they have to take you in.’ I am not sure if I got this quote verbatim, attributed to the famous poet Robert Frost. I thought about it for awhile. It is from our family we learn grace. We mess up badly and it is, often, our family that forgives us when we return home. No matter how badly I messed up I can return home and start afresh. Grace is a gift. There is no other way to put it. I don’t deserve it. Every person is flawed and makes mistakes. And we return home. No matter what we did.

My birthday is coming up (and I am just depressed). I can not tell you exactly why although I can guess. Part of that is grief. Most of my life is over. I can’t go back. Wishing is futile. Somehow I need to settle things. My relationship with my daughter is fractured. I don’t know how to repair it. Lectures and judgements don’t do it. I am aware of the ticking time. I am running out of time. I guess, everyone wants to leave a legacy. I am working at getting my first book of poetry out but it is a long and uncertain process. My wife is the only one who really cares about that. She is my editor and a good one. Things really don’t matter. I really don’t know how much time I have left. For that matter, no one knows for sure. I know that somehow I need to make peace with the people who matter to me. I don’t know how. I am just depressed. That is all I know.

My son likes painting water colors. He showed us on his cell a picture of one he made for his young nephew–less than a year old. It was lovely. I was thrilled he did that. His nephew will appreciate the picture when he gets older. It so happened that we gave him a paint set for Hanukkah and Christmas. He was delighted with it. My wife bought the set for him. I still have two collages he made for me–one was for father’s day and he made a small one on a mirror. I do not see him often enough but when he is in the area, he makes an effort to see me, which I appreciate. I talk to him every few weeks briefly. I am glad we have that contact. All I know he gives great hugs.

Being a father is not a right. It is a privilege. Sunday was Father’s Day. My son called me to wish me “Happy Father’s Day.” I did not hear from my daughter: she had hung up on me several weeks ago and cursed me out. I had written her a letter and she reacted violently to my words. Either we have a relationship based on truth or we have no relationship. It is her choice not to talk to me. I am not her friend but her Dad. And I will continue to speak the truth whether or not she likes it.

Lynelle and I celebrated Father’s Day by taking the Millersburg ferry across the Susquehanna River and eating at a great restaurant that was walking distance. Millersburg is a great quaint town. I took many pictures with my new digital camera of the river and of the town. I could not think of a better way to spend Father’s Day.

But Now I Believe

Author: siggy

The two worse words in the English language are “I can’t”.

Nothing more than those two words can destroy a relationship.

Nothing more than those two words can destroy one’s potential.

And there is nothing worse than not trying.

“I can’t.”  I can’t tell you how many times I flung those words at my wife.  She flung them back at me.  My two children, 4 and 5, are learning the same.  I am now trying to undo the damage.  For six years my wife has refused to listen to those two words.  When I uttered them in her presence she would scream at me, “No!  No!  Anything is possible.  Please don’t teach our two children to say those words and believe just because something is difficult that is enough reason not to try.”  For six years she has been hammering at me.  For years those around me had exclaimed, “There is absolutely nothing you can’t do.”  I would just shrug my shoulders and continue my negative ways.  I will turn 45 soon.  For the first time in my life I believe I am capable.  My wife has finally won.  “I can’t” has been eliminated from my vocabulary and replaced with the attitude, “I can.”  Every successful man has a woman behind him.  I know that perfectly.  And I have fought my wife every step of the way.  But now I believe.

A pair of catbirds were hanging around.  Usually that means they might have a nest nearby.  I looked and found a nest in a large bush.  I never did see one in it.  This is not the first time we have had a catbird nesting nearby.  Another time a half grown catbird found its way into our garage and I was thrilled when my son captured it and let it go in the bush they were nesting in.  Last year we had a Carolina wren nesting only feet from our door step.  It kept hopping on top of our fence nearby and then I found out what a lovely voice it has.  I did find the nest.  You never know what bird will have a nest nearby.

Diet Won’t Do It Alone

Author: siggy

Diet won’t do it alone.  Sure, you have to watch what you eat but diet combined with exercise and then you will lose weight.  When I went to high school, we had gym every day.  No wonder the youth are often overweight.  They might get gym once a week and our nation decries how obesity is a problem for our youth and tries to control it by limiting what the youth can eat in the their (???) cafeterias.  It is a losing battle.  You just have to get more exercise.  Go back to having gym every day five times a week in high school and I guarantee obesity will be less a problem.

The “kiddies” were all taking pictures of the different fish in the aquarium with their I Phones and I Pads.  Everyone had them.  I read, presently, more photos are being taken with those devices than regular cameras.  These kids grew up with that technology so it really should not be that surprising to see that.  I am a dinosaur:  I am still using a film camera.  I am about to buy my first digital camera.  Prices have come down considerably.  I am slow to take up new technology except it is not new anymore.  I am just old.

My son moved to South Carolina today.  Myrtle Beach to be exact.  This is a big move on his part.  He has always lived in Central Pennsylvania his whole life.  I guess the only constant is change.  He is coming back for Christmas.  I will see him then.  And I wish him good luck.

Somehow I felt relieved after both of my parents died.  I could be my own person easier.  They were not telling me I did not match up any longer or something I was doing wasn’t right.  My father never told me exactly how I did not match up.  I just knew I didn’t.  I had gotten into debt and that was a cardinal sin and I did not make much money.  That is what he was impressed by–money.  Nothing I did.  Mom was overly concerned about appearances.  Looking right to the rest of the world.  I did not have to deal with any of that any longer.  They were not looking over my shoulders any longer.  I was just relieved.

‘Songs To Aging Children Come’  This is the title and a line from an early Joni Mitchell song I heard in the late sixties.  In the song she says in beautiful language and this is a paraphrase:  there is all this beauty around and don’t you see it.  I do.  And she ends the song saying:  ‘songs to aging children come.  This is one’.  Back then and now I identified with the song.  Another line was ‘people hurry by so quickly, don’t they hear the melodies…’

I saw all this beauty around me as a young adult and others were not seeing it.  I could not understand that.  Even today.  I starting writing back then to the present to record this marvelous world before me and slow down my pace so I could capture this beauty.  Then she ends the song:  ‘Songs to aging children come.  This is one.’  I had to grow up and still be child-like so I understood her song perfectly.  I was not all alone.