Bucket List

Over the last five years, almost six now, I’ve spent quite a chunk of my time figuring out a manageable bucket list.

I’m a firm believer that thoughts shape (and reshape) reality at will and as long as I can focus on my list and decide, “this is what I’m going to do,” my thoughts and positive energy will manifest around me. Those items on my bucket list will be checked off, one by one.

Hey… a fella can dream, right? Gotta keep the positive energy alive and kicking at all costs.

Someday I’ll return to Bermuda. In the Old Life I was blessed with a trip. Through Norwegian Freestyle Cruising, I was three days at sea to the island on a floating adult playground, two days docked at King’s Landing, and three days back. While it was an adventure and enjoyable for the most part, it wasn’t truly my vacation. I want to do, what I want to do.

Therefore, I plan on returning with Nancy someday. I know having her by my side, will truly be “my” vacation. It will assuredly be her vacation as well. We both share almost all the same interests so saying it’s “my” vacation, doubles as hers and vice versa.

I’ll have to jump through some hoops for awhile however. That departure from Boston Harbor moving at eight miles an hour across the sea, is something I’m very much looking forward to.

Because I’m a fan of the ocean, I’d also like to take an Alaskan Cruise in the future. Walk the icebergs. Witness the brilliance of the Aurora Borealis up close and personal in all it’s shimmering and wavy green glory. See the night sky as it was meant to be seen; crystal clear and unobstructed. More lights and colors than can be imagined. I’m not even sure what to fully expect on an excursion such as that… yet, I’m drawn to it for some reason.

I’d like to visit Machu Picchu in Peru. Touch the citadel’s stonework and walk the trails of antiquity. Stand at the tallest point of the remains and survey the Andes from up high. In the vein of ancients ruins, I’d also enjoy a visit to the Bolivian Highlands to see Puma Punku firsthand and walk the streets of the City of the Gods.

To one day stand at the base of any pyramid, is on the list of things to accomplish on my list.

I can play the meanest air guitar you’ve ever seen. I can jam to any song and someday I’d like to learn to play a real stringed instrument.

The piano has always fascinated me and tugged at my heart strings as well. Someday I’ll devote some time to learning the piano. I’ve even had a love for the harmonica at one time, but the guitar and piano come first.

I thoroughly enjoy Comic Con. It’s the one place on Earth I can be certain I’m surrounded by like minded individuals. I was able to attend one in Rhode Island with some close friends a few years back and had a blast.

San Diego is the highest on the list of cons. New York would suffice, but San Diego Comic Con is the dream. I will also attend a Star Trek Convention one day. I’ve been in the presence of Nichelle Nichols and have Walter Koenig’s autograph and being in their vicinity has a welcoming family vibe to it. Star Trek was the cornerstone of my childhood.

I’d love to invest some time in drawing and artwork. Painting. Utilizing technology to create. Conjuring a picture in my mind and having the ability to transfer that image to paper, monitor or canvass. All I can seem to muster today is stick figures and shapes. I suck at Pictionary.

Writing a novel. Writing a series. Writing a screen play. Returning to Six Flags and playing like a child with my child in a water park. I would like to try windsurfing, being rolled down a steep hill in one of those inflatable hamster wheels, colliding into others on the way down. I wish to learn to water ski, go snowboarding again, own my own boat and have a tiny getaway cabin nestled away in the woods with a stream nearby.

Someday Nancy will own a motorcycle. To be frank, they scare the crap out of me, but my bucket list includes Nancy and her desires, and I would love to surprise her with one someday. Seeing those tears of joy, would be worth every penny.

My youngest would relish in the thought of spending a few hours (or an overnight) in a haunted location (be it a castle or abandoned hospital) with “ghost hunting” equipment. Using thermal scanners and high end cameras, tip toeing empty halls with a digital recorder and looking for electromagnetic spikes and listening for creepy noises. To be able to say, “let’s do this,” would be amazing.

Having a small piece of land to do what I please, is located in the middle of the list. I’ll never pay a mortgage again so saving up will be a lengthy process, but it will happen someday. I’ll have a small manageable garden on my property and the cabin will be just far enough away from civilization, yet within walking distance if necessary.

To shake the hands of Nathan Fillion, Ozzy Osborne, Harrison Ford and Kate Mulgrew and say with an awkward smile, “I am a HUGE fan.”

I’ve never ridden or operated a snowmobile and would enjoy the opportunity.

One thing I’ve always wanted to participate in is a zero gravity plane ride. Or float, spin and twist inside a wind tunnel.

In actuality, the list is lengthy. Do you have a bucket list? Are you checking them off one by one or little by little? To live is more than just existing. Life needs to be lived. I suggest, if you don’t have a bucket list started, start one ASAP. Focusing on a bucket list provides focus in life. As long as we’re striving to accomplish those things we wish to accomplish, then we’re more than just existing and striving towards being better than we were the day before. It becomes more about living and experiencing the joys of life. If needed, start small. Work towards the tougher or smaller items on the list, first. Find a way to check them off.

That’s where I’m at in this phase of life and living. Working towards the toughest of the list, first and foremost. So many things I wish to do, but time is an enemy that shows no remorse. It doesn’t slow down. It never stops. Out of all the items on my list, one takes precedence and is elevated to the one that needs to be accomplished above all others. Regardless of the outcome or lack thereof. A personal quest that needs to be conquered before attempting to tackle anything else below it.

I will not rest and fully pursue any other bucket list item, until I finish and self publish my first book.

I will not focus on anything else. I will not attempt to stray from the goal. I have a single minded focal point that drives me forward and keeps me rooted.

Once completed, I’ll work on the others on the list. Finish the series… then perhaps use some free time to learn the guitar.

I don’t speak often on writing. One thing I’ve learned through the process, above everything else, is the fact it’s NOT easy. Like an onion, writing is multi layered and at times, tear inducing.

The phases of writing a body of work not only include actually writing it, releasing it from the confines of the mind, reading, changing, adding, subtracting, rereading, the complexities of the edits, and finding the right people who want to see you succeed as much as you, but the personal emotions that accompany the process.

Doubt. Anger. Fear. Impostor Syndrome. Sadness. Anxiety. More doubt. Commitment. Perseverance. More fear. Above all the others on my lengthy list of things to get done with the remainder of my days, the book comes first.

And I’ve come to a personal conclusion through the process of writing, and sharing with others.

If I’m able to conquer those emotions and push through it all… to check off that toughest one, highest on the list–

–Anything is possible. Anything at all. The world is ours once we stop existing and start living instead.

I’m ready to live.

Thank you for reading and being a part of my journey. Please subscribe in the provided area to receive a notification of new posts by email. Please give it a like if you like it, feel free to share with others or leave a comment if you wish. See you at the next one.

 

 

 

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Karma

“What goes around comes around, is nothing more than a myth.” JSM

 

I spent an unhealthy amount of time throughout my years, wishing for karmic retribution. People of my past, strangers, friends, co-workers… anyone who crossed me, or made my life a struggle, received the prayer.

“God, if you’re listening…”

Then a slew of, “give them their just desserts. Bad things can’t only happen to good people, can it? What goes around HAS to come around.”

I wished ill will upon others. I demanded retribution. It never mattered who it was or who was the target of my immediate anger at the time: Silly high school relationships. A pissed off boss. A condescending friend. A trusted confidant.

Each one got the prayer.

Then one afternoon at work, plucking away at the keyboard, it dawned on me.

“It’s not me. It’s everyone else.”

“Look at it from the perspective of, everyone is a product of their experiences and their environment. Just… like… you.”

Then I conceptualized what it could possibly be like to walk in another’s shoes. If only for a few minutes.

To say I’ve been duped through life, is an understatement. But I’m not the only one. I began the painstaking task of attempting to dive into the psyches of others. “What is the driving motivator to compel people, to do the things they do?”

Were they duped to do wrong by me?  Coerced in some fashion? That would make sense.”

If not tricked, duped, wrongfully instructed, manipulated, or host to an alien parasite, then it must be something else. If it boils down to something else… the only thing I can reach a verdict on, is the idea there are people out there who feel no remorse. Believe to the core of their being they can do no wrong. Regardless of what kind of destruction they leave in their wake.

I’ve swallowed some large pills in my day, but swallowing that philosophy down and digesting it, was one of the largest and toughest. Because I refused to become something I despise, I adopted that new mentality as quick as I could.

I decided to be better. I had to rise above it as high as I could go. I forced to come to grips with the idea, the only thing “I” can do, is be better than those who thought my back seemed like a good place to drive in a dagger.

Dwelling on the past only facilitates a difficult future. The mind is a weapon and once it turns on you, game over. I had to transform my mind into less of a weapon, and more of a strategic landscape. Set up the game like an expansive chessboard. Move my pieces in a way that guarantees me a win. Glory wasn’t about to drop from the sky and hand me everything I need. The first thing I had to do is surrender to the game and start over.

“The only control I have, is me.”

“Listen to the advice. Continue to do what you want. Live your life. Focus on what you deem as important and ignore everything else around you. Utilize that bubble you once created as a defense mechanism, and give it a different purpose for awhile. What’s the first thing you need right now? Break it down incrementally.”

“I need to take care of my children.”

“What’s the plan for that?”

“I need to make more money. That will take care of that.”

“What will you do to make this money? A second job?”

“If I work a second job, I won’t see the kids. I’ll have more money… but all for myself. It’s not about me, it’s about them.”

“Another option then?”

.

.

.

“I know just the thing. You’re a freaking genius.”

I remember a trip to Foxwoods with some friends back in the Old Life and ten minutes before I left the casino to come back to Maine, I won a jackpot of $357.00. Through the course of the weekend, I pocket almost $500. Other than the scratch-off tickets I’ve received in birthday cards worth $5-10, the casino winnings were my only gambling win.

After I made my decision, I called Nancy. “Meet me at my place. We’re going for a drive.”

“Where we going?”

“Bangor. I have some money I want to spend.”

She met me twenty minutes later and with my wallet in hand, we drove to Hollywood Slots in Bangor Maine. A casino close by. Roughly an hour drive.

“What are we doing here?” She crossed the threshold and looked around the lobby.

I rubbed my hands together and followed the signs, “I’m feeling lucky. Good things are about to happen.”

“How much are you planning to spend? None of my business, just curious.”

Even I was curious. I had a set amount budgeted to the side and my ATM card if needed, but I had a plan. That asinine plan was to replicate how I won at Foxwoods. If I was that lucky before, perhaps I was destined to be lucky again.

I doubled my money that afternoon. Walked out with my head held high. Feeling confident and calm. This was the way I would fix my problems. I’ll make my own luck.

Unfortunately, life is very little about luck. Life is hard. Even when life is good, it’s still a struggle and sometimes karma decides it’s not quite done with us yet.

When I say I doubled my money, I came back home with $40. Spent $20. Shortly thereafter, I returned to the convenience stores and shopping areas and purchased scratch-offs. Won more money. Each moment I had, I was sitting in my car with a penny, scraping and swiping silver flakes to the floor and praying for more winnings. $5, $1, $20 and a decent one of $100. As long as I was winning, I was doing better than I was before.

I couldn’t have been more wrong.

Thank you for reading and being a part of my journey. Please subscribe in the provided area to receive a notification of new posts by email. Please give it a like if you like it, feel free to share with others or leave a comment if you wish. See you at the next one.

 

 

 

 

 

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The Battle Begins

The awakening. Eyes opened wide. Body locked up with fear. A hand reaches up and clutches the chest. The end of the night is near. Breathing shallow, sweat trickling, a tingle from head to feet. “Pull yourself together. Relax. Slow down. The task is not yet complete. You’ve something left undone, you know, but… you just don’t know it yet. If you leave it alone, ignore what you’ve been shown, you’ll live your life in regret.”

Up to this point much pondering, and streams of archaic thought. Yet the struggle not over. A new battle begins. Stomach tied up in a knot.

A new day at dawn, the armor back on, sword sharpened and back in it’s sheath. Destined to walk this darkening path, and terrified of what’s beneath. A ticking bomb that’s set to go off, in the periphery the demons gather. Eyes straight ahead, a pain in my head, I force my feet to mover faster.

The blade inches out with each passerby. An itch to cut them all down to size. A rush to bring pain, contempt and disdain, “please fall and meet your demise.” A wicked stare will meet each eye, they cower and scurry away. Each of their retreat, off my narrow street, brightens up my day.

“This isn’t you. Explain yourself. Becoming all that you hate. Ridiculous child. Turn your back to the fight. Don’t make another mistake. The greatest struggle is accepting, what it is you can’t control. If you walk this path you’ll lose it all: body, mind and soul.

I sprint from the voice and block out the sound. My armor wearing me down. My boots feel like lead, I lower my head, and drop my knees to the ground.

“I told you so. The weight is too much. Look around. The road is vacant. You’ve got what you wanted, you’re now all alone. Helpless and forsaken. When the storms rage on and you’ve lost it all, you’ll be pounding a fist on their doors. The shades will be drawn and they’ll carry on and leave you to be ignored. The only way to redeem yourself is to discard all you know. Drop the blade and armor, walk away. You only reap what you sow.”

The battle was fought exclusively, within the recesses of my mind. I fought to push on, sword withdrawn, and no person could I find. The clouds gathered among the dark and brought down a torrential rain. Soaked to the bone and all alone, adding more weight to my pain. The choice now clear and obvious, and no end to the path ahead. Each step felt like fire. Now trapped in a mire.

Time to do what the voice had said.

I turned around, allowed the armor to fall, and the darkness fled the sky. Clouds parted, I looked up into the blue, and blinked water from my eye. The path dried up, I kicked off my boots and slid the sword back in it’s home. I made my way down a different path and found a new street to roam. I almost transformed into something of which I could’ve never come back. Had to learn through the fight, and the stifling night, sometimes it’s best to refrain from attack. Never strive to become something, that contradicts who you are. You may have to battle, toil and struggle and be forced to wear some scars.

Before venturing on and determining, what it was I truly am, one more stop inside my darkened cave, where it all began. I lit a torch and approached the wall, “I know what the voice had said. If I hadn’t of listened and made a decision, I was probably as good as dead.”

The torch light flickered, lit up the room, and the shadows danced around. My heart pounding, and the crackling fire was the only sound. I listened to the voice and retreated, and decided against the fight. The road was too long and I was no longer strong and devoid of all delight.

It was imperative I stopped living a life that contradicts who I am. Time to return to pondering, and rethinking the master plan. I came to grips with my reality and had to listen to my call. But before I left the cave, I smiled, and placed my sword up on the wall.

Thank you for reading and being a part of my journey. Please subscribe in the provided area to receive a notification of new posts by email. Please give it a like if you like it, feel free to share with others or leave a comment if you wish. See you at the next one.

 

 

 

 

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Therapy

“Insanity is trusting in sanity.” JSM

I was asked to visit a counselor quite a few years back (many, many, many moons ago) and thought it to be a colossal waste of time. I have my reasons.

It was a whole lot of sitting, and listening.

Listening till my ears felt like they’d bleed and my mind would explode.

When I’m backed into a corner, I do one of two things: Shut down and clam up, or lash out until my vocal outburst makes me feel better. In most cases, it’s safer to remain quiet and calm. I hate regretting the things I say, regardless of how angry I am.

So when forced to sit and listen to a counselor tell me what my problems were and how I should be working on them, I sighed hard and my eyes rolled.

I don’t need to be here. This is absurd. 

My knuckles cracked, my legs crossed and uncrossed back and forth and I sat in a defensive posture shifting my weight to either side of the chair until it was time to leave. When I was able to get a word in edgewise, I spent those few seconds asking him questions, throwing out hypothetical scenarios and trying to put him in the corner, but did it respectably and never once had to raise my voice.

“Hey, doc, check it out. If you were in the same position, wouldn’t you respond the same way?”

“Well, were not talking about me, are we? We’re talking about you.”

“I understand that. But for a second, humor me and swap places with me. Think about it for a moment. You’d do the exact… same… thing… wouldn’t you.”

“It’s possible. I may have a similar response. But let’s focus on you and deal with the…”

“We can change the subject right now and you can stop trying to sway me to believe what I did was wrong, when you would do the exact… same… thing. I don’t deal well with hypocrisy. Next!”

Despite the fact I was able to avoid some of the BS and talk my way around it, most of the hour in that small room was me listening to a stranger speak. Speaking on matters he couldn’t possibly understand. But boy oh boy, did he have a lot to say on the matter.

Did I take anything away from the experience? Of course. What I took away was for me and me alone. What I will say openly is, I left those two sessions knowing I was fine and did nothing wrong, despite the fact someone was trying to manipulate me into thinking I was crazy and incorrect.

There’s nothing more maddening than someone telling you you’re crazy and need help.

Nothing.

Because the more it’s said, the more we’ll eventually question if we really are sane or not.

When the New Life began, I questioned my sanity, often, and felt justified with those feelings. In order to battle that part of my mind, and walk away unscathed and remain sane, I was forced to embrace the insanity. Only then did I feel normal.

***

Nancy and I sat in plastic rocking chairs, on the deck, outside our small villa. Hiding away high up in the mountains, we had one more day of solitude and comfort before having to return to the “real world” the following morning. I was wrapped in a thick white bathrobe, sipping coffee, and she sat beside me rocking gently in silence. One thing I noticed right away about her, she enjoys the quiet as much as I. The only sounds around us was the light patter of rain on the roof above.

She looked my way and asked a question I wasn’t prepared for. “What were you dreaming about last night?”

It was a moment when you’re forced to stop and really think before responding. Quite possibly thirty or more seconds before I answered. “I’m not sure. I can remember fragments and pieces, but I can’t really remember everything. Why?”

“You were talking and moving around a lot.”

“What was I saying?”

“You said, ‘how can he leave me here?’ and later on you thrashed around and yelled, ‘next time I go there, you’ll see.’ I laughed. I almost recorded it.”

I snickered, “thanks for not recording it.”

“You’re welcome.”

“My dreams are strange and I’m not sure they’re worth sharing.”

“All dreams are worth sharing.”

I turned my chair. “OK. What if I told you that my most recent dreams revolve around an old man named Joe and he convinced me to kill his wife in cold blood. With a broadsword, no less. He lives in a remodeled church in the middle of the woods and makes me eat food with him every time I visit. Strange enough for ya?”

“I’ve heard stranger.”

I leaned in and drank from my mug. “What if I told you that sleeping is some of the only respite I get, and the dreams are getting to the point where I fear falling asleep. It’s a no win situation.”

She looked away to the mountains. “Always pay attention to your dreams. Even if they scare you.”

It was a punch to the gut. While reality didn’t make any sense, I felt safe in the dream world; up until a few weeks ago. The more I visited the refuge, and allowed the experiences to lure me in as deep as possible, the more uncomfortable I was becoming over time. Walking a fine line between fantasy and reality and allowing it to get to the point where the two intersected and blurred together.

And it was getting out of control.

She stood and stretched. “Here’s an idea. It sounds like you have a hyperactive imagination. Have you thought of writing any of this down?”

My brow lowered, “As in keeping a journal? You’ve seen all the notebooks. I write a lot of stuff down. Dream journals, random notes… I haven’t recorded anything in a while.”

“Take it a step further.”

“How so?”

“Make sense of it. Organize it all. It sounds like you may need…”

I interrupted. “Let me guess… therapy?”

She laughed and lightly slapped my knee. “No. Not therapy. More like something therapeutic. Something to get your mind off your mind.”

“I hate my mind right now.”

“All the more reason to make sense of it all. Create some order to it.”

“I wouldn’t even know where to start.”

“Start at the beginning.”

We walked to the Jacuzzi shortly thereafter and after ten minutes of sitting in the bubbling hot water, the rain turned into snow. We both laughed and the combination of heat from below mixing with the snow from above provided a strange sensation on my skin. My brain had difficulties distinguishing how I should physically feel. I did my best to blend the  sensations together and found my eyes closing. She was right. I needed something therapeutic. Something to bring me back from the dead.

Unfortunately, I wouldn’t find it for quite some time. Or perhaps fortunately I found it at just the right moment. Everything happens for a reason.

But first, my dog had to get hit by a car. A family member had to be admitted to a hospital and another passed away. I was forced to utilize a singular specific option to survive and push forward. Nancy had to be carved open like a Thanksgiving turkey. I took a thirty day hiatus from employment, and my home placed under quarantine.

Change can be good. We must be able to adapt to any situation thrown at us. It’s imperative to self preservation.

Over the next year, I transformed into a brand new person. Change changed me.

Thank you for reading and being a part of my journey. Please subscribe in the provided area to receive a notification of new posts by email. Please give it a like if you like it, feel free to share with others or leave a comment if you wish. See you at the next one.

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Over the Hill

“I got a mind full of aggravation. I can take it if I just relax. I say a prayer for the motivation. Keep me solid so I stay on track. But there’s a monkey on my back and it don’t know how to act, got me climbin’ up and down the walls. Now I gotta make a choice, maybe then I can rejoice ‘cause I’m sick of all the same withdrawals.
I got a mind full of inspiration and I ain’t livin’ in the past no more.” Shinedown

For the longest time, I perceived life as a race. There’s only so much time to accomplish missions in life and the only way to successfully complete a mission, is to run the race as hard as humanly possible.

After running for the majority of my life, the race became an exhausting endeavor. I was tired of running from this unseen and formidable enemy called, time.

Time is mean. It’s a cruel and heartless foe. It laughs, mocks and scorns. Time can bring you down, beat you up and make you feel small.

I experienced that mostly through my thirties. My thirties were such a struggle. I questioned if I’d ever find a finish line to this unending and seemingly pointless race. The finish line kept moving, and no matter how hard I sprinted, I could never reach it. Most of the time, I couldn’t even see the finish line and even doubted its existence, but I ran regardless.

Most would call it, The Rat Race.

Goal setting was an impossible feat. I’d attempt to set a goal or two, but the race was in constant flux, abruptly changing day to day, week to week, month to month, year to year and the main road branched off to another, and multiple forks appeared and dark dusty trails popped up and the paths splintered and continued branching and I eventually got to the point where I said, “Yup. This is the way life is supposed to be. None of these roads make any sense.”

“Life is destined to be nothing but pure chaos.”

I had to consider the idea, at one point along the journey that theoretically, from chaos, comes order. Unfortunately the order of life was hidden from sight. I was bombarded with a slew of constant negative energy. Yes… I speak often on energy. Positive energy yields positive results. Negative energy spawns negative results. As simple as that. This was a lesson learned hard.

At the time, I saw the negative as normal. Don’t we all? We become accustomed to it after awhile. Numb. Hypnotized. Caught in its snare. Then we change and transform into something that contradicts who we originally were, and what was once a positive mentality, becomes the antithesis.

The negative can be disguised as something positive. Ain’t that a humdinger. Life is sneaky and underhanded sometimes.

In my case, the variables are too many to count. The negative took on multiple forms and over time, I felt normal as a result of the full time exposure. I floated and drifted through reality like a zombie and spent a good number of years not fully being aware of what I had become.

I didn’t know who I was, what I wanted to do, how I wanted to live or how to run my race. I was living my life for other people and the priorities of life was dictated by others.

It affected everything: My job, my children, my friendships and my self esteem. My state of mind and my sense of purpose. Trudging through the day to day operations in a constant fog of “whatever” and not really caring.

That was the majority of my thirties.

Then one day, even though I had been watching it from afar and growing on the horizon, a storm of unprecedented power and energy tore through. As if a tornado formed overhead and the funnel shot straight down, swirled violently around my universe; ripping me away from my foundations. An awakening of sorts. My eyes opened wide and I allowed the storm to take me to places unknown and unexplored.

Everything changed after that.

I had to become familiar with the New Life. The Old Life was all I knew and understood. That in and of itself was a challenge all its own. New rules. New priorities. New outlooks.

It was the outlooks that set me on a different path. Potential. An unfamiliar path to be certain, but the scenery started to grow on me after a time. I saw new colors, shapes and patterns. The Old Life was gray and cloudy and the vibrancy of the new setting was a difficult pill to swallow… at first. Like a blind man seeing light for the first time.

It wasn’t until I reached my forties did I consider how awesome life truly is. At this age, we encounter truths. We know who our true friends are. We make decisions based on priorities and truth. We don’t allow for impulse, and our decisions are carefully plotted as opposed to acting willy nilly and carelessly. Relationships are easier to maintain and we tend to steer clear of selfish people. We discard and ignore the negative components of life. The friendships may be fewer, but they’re the ones to cherish and focus on.

As I crest over the hill, I know who I am, what I want and where I want to go. I don’t see the rat race anymore. In fact, I walked off the race track some time ago and never once looked back. That lifestyle doesn’t make sense to me and I now focus on what I deem as important.

So with that said, I’m announcing something I told myself long ago I would never do again.

Yeah… like I mentioned a couple of installments ago, some vows are destined to be broken.

This summer I’m getting married.

My children are over the moon about it. They love Nancy to pieces and I can’t think of anyone I’d rather spend the rest of my days with.

I guess once you start over the hill, life truly does change for the better.

To my father I say, “Good things come to those who wait. And sometimes we don’t have to wait too long.”

Thank you for reading and being a part of my journey. Please subscribe in the provided area to receive a notification of new posts by email. Please give it a like if you like it, feel free to share with others or leave a comment if you wish. See you at the next one.

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Pyramid Power

“In the pursuit of any passion, confidence is paramount. Without confidence, passion dies.” JSM

 

When I said I disappeared into nature with Nancy, a few years back, it wasn’t exactly what might be envisioned. It wasn’t as though we were tenting out in the middle of nowhere, living off the land, sleeping out under the stars and filtering water from a nearby stream; catching fish with a pole, huddled around a bonfire for warmth.

No. We rented a suite at the base of a mountain in early October and had access to a hot-tub and our own private deck. I was desperate for a vacation and the urge to “get away” and as far away as possible tugged at my heart and soul until I couldn’t take it anymore.

The resort was out of season and it seemed as if we were the only ones there. In fact, when it was time for our massages, the masseuse had to be called in by a special request. I made sure to tip her well for traveling all that way, for two people.

However, despite the fact it was a resort, I was indeed ensconced by the majesty of nature.

It was quiet. I was finally away from it all. Serene and peaceful. Only the pair of us and we had free reign of everything circling our little corner of the world.

The mountain was shaped like a towering pyramid and it exuded a magnetism that drew me to the base and pulled my eyes skyward. No snow had yet capped its peak, but it was enveloped by a thick ominous mist. Like some Lovecraftian beast of nature staring down, daring me to trek to its peak. The top of the pyramid mountain was hidden from view and it called to me.

I frothed to climb to the summit.

I’ve always had a strange fascination with pyramids. From Egypt, to the Pyramid of the Sun in Mexico nestled within the City of the Gods. The one recently discovered along the Antarctica ice, to the Ziggurats in Iran and Iraq.

I love the mysteries of these colossal structures. How they’re supposedly constructed along geographical ley lines around the world. The pseudo-scientific speculation of their purposes and why they were built in the first place. Going beyond the idea they were created exclusively to house the dead in preparation for the afterlife.

The unfounded concept that if one places a dulled razor inside a pyramid, it can be reused, as the structure appears to re-sharpen the blade’s edge. Allegedly, the razor can be used for months even after dulled. Critters diagnosed with cancer and other illnesses that are seemingly healed, after spending time inside a pyramidal structure. The idea that a pyramid harnesses and distributes energy.

All the abstract notions that are easily dismissed as pseudo-scientific mumbo jumbo.

Despite the mumbo jumbo, and guessing, I still feel its influence. In fact, even today, the pyramid displays power and importance, and at times easily overlooked and ignored.

Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs is shaped liked a pyramid. The base and foundation is comprised of our basic needs. The physiological needs are represented first: Water, shelter, food. Half way up the pyramid are sections on psychological requirements: Safety, belongingness and feelings of accomplishment. At the top of the pyramid design, is self-actualization and the yearning to discover our true potential.

The food pyramid also comes to mind, as well as the Advertising Pyramid. Even company logos such as Citgo, Google Play, AOL, Bass, Delta Airlines and Hyundai Engineering (among many others) are all shaped like a pyramid.

An unfinished pyramid is even depicted on our dollar bill. But that’s a rabbit hole all in it’s own.

The mountain before me may not have been a man made structure comprised of hundreds of tons of hand carved rocks, but it was undeniably shaped like one, and beckoned me from afar. There’s something about pyramids that seem supernatural, and fill me with wonder.

Even though it’s illegal to climb one, I envy the gentleman who scaled to the top of the Pyramid of Khufu and was promptly arrested after his descent. I don’t particularly envy being handcuffed and placed in the backseat of a cruiser and charged with trespassing, but I envy the climb, and the view from the top. It must have been exhilarating.

For some reason, I need to climb.

***

“Where are we going?” She asked as we started across the dampened landscape.

I smirked and looked over my shoulder to Nancy, who was slowing her stride behind me. “We’re climbing to the top.” I replied, picking up the pace.

“Um, no. We can’t climb that. It’ll be dark soon. Look at that thing.”

“Then we better get a move on.”

“Hold on. Hold on. Of all the things we can do around here, why exactly are we climbing that?”

“Because it needs to be climbed.” I responded.

“That doesn’t really answer the question.” She crossed her arms and stared me down.

I looked to the top and sighed. “Mountains need to be scaled. They’re destined to be conquered. It taunts me. It’s telling me I can’t do it. I aim to prove otherwise.”

“Listen.” She joined my side and looked up into the swirling undulating fog high above us. “Maybe another time. Let’s go for a bike ride instead. Let’s soak in the hot tub. Let’s walk a trail. Let’s make some coffee and watch a funny movie. There’s so much more to do. We’ll never reach the top. At least not today.”

What happened next is the first time I’ve ever raised my voice to her. I didn’t necessarily speak at her, but instead screamed at the ground below my feet, the palms of my shaking hands pressed into my temples.

“I’M TIRED OF BEING TOLD I CAN’T DO IT!”

She didn’t even flinch at my outburst. She closed the distance and placed her hand on my shoulder. “No one’s saying it can’t be done, but we should consider the variables. It’ll be dark soon. It’s been raining. It’s cold. It could be muddy. We could lose our way. We don’t have any water. Just because it’s there, doesn’t mean it should be tackled immediately. We gotta think this through. You really want to do this, don’t you? I can see it in your eyes.”

I resigned to defeat. “No. You’re right. It can’t be done today. I was being impulsive.” I smiled and looked to the sky. “I’m sorry I yelled. I’ve just been told repeatedly that I can’t do something or I shouldn’t do something. My ideas and dreams are foolish. It gets tiring after awhile.”

“I know how you feel.”

“Do you?”

“Oh yeah.”

“There. Something else we have in common.”

She kicked a rock across the grass and stuffed her hands in her jacket pockets. “Other than climbing a mountain, what is it you want to do? You say you’ve been told your dreams are foolish and ignore the things you want to do. What is it? What do you want to do?”

I stopped and blinked away a welling tear. I had to turn away and avoid her persistent gaze. “To be honest, I have no idea right now.” I swallowed hard and met her eyes. “Hopefully someday it comes to me.”

Thank you for reading and being a part of my journey. Please subscribe in the provided area to receive a notification of new posts by email. Please give it a like if you like it, feel free to share with others or leave a comment if you wish. See you at the next one.

 

 

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Deconstruction

I haven’t written anything in quite some time. It’s been close to a month since I put words and thoughts on paper and after an online chat with a friend this morning, I decided it was time to climb back on the saddle and continue the ride. Sometimes all we need is a push.

Unfortunately, I needed a shove.

I had my reasons for taking another hiatus, but now I’ve run out of excuses.

I can’t overthink things anymore and I found myself doing it quite frequently as of late. Overthinking only leads to gray and cloudy areas. Those gray areas only intensify the chaos currently residing in the brain. I had to again bring my focus to black and white exclusively. Life is easier to manage that way. Overthinking gets me nowhere, fast.

It was back to another deconstruction.

I feel as though I may have gotten ahead of myself along this blog journey, bouncing back and forth through time. I’ve never had the pleasure of living a linear existence, so as a result, I bounce and move around a lot, which is indicative of my life. We can only portray and communicate about ourselves based on our life experiences.

Our experiences through this world dictate who we are as people. We are, who we are, because of what we’ve experienced though our five senses, what we’ve endured, conquered and witnessed. I can say I’ve had my fair share of all of it.

“Big deal. So haven’t we all.”

This is true. My suffering is no greater or worse than anyone else. I am no more or less special than any other person walking their path. Merely different.

Because I classify myself as “different” I’m forced to be different. I only wish to be who I am, come Hell or high water. If I tried to be like someone else, I would no longer be myself. I can’t accept that.

Deconstructing life is a tricky thing. Figuring out what one can do without and balancing it with what can’t be lived without. Taking stock and inventory of everything and whittling a lifestyle down to the core basics.

Just after the Old Life, I had to seriously consider what it was I was trying to accomplish and at the time, I had no clue. Only fragments of bizarre synchronicity, repeated numbers, coincidences and strange feelings that didn’t make any sense. Occurrences which made me scratch my head and kept me awake at night. When I was finally able to find a place of restful slumber, I was bombarded and plagued with dreams that furthered the overall confusion.

Because life didn’t make sense, I was “forced” to make sense of it. I had to tear down my life and see it from the ground up. Chiseling away at my mind to formulate something tangible. I had to experience out of body moments to visualize what it was I wanted to see.

Sometimes personal truth is a paradigm shattering cataclysm and we can’t be fully prepared for it. That’s why we find ourselves hiding from our truth. Keeping the eyes pressed shut and never daring to sneak a peek. Enjoying the reality with which we’re presented and finding comfort in routine. Any deviation of that routine causes discomfort and anxiety. We question self development, because it’s what we’re trained to do.

I suppose I was sick of that trap. Living in a reality designed around me and forcing me to abide by specific rules and regulations. Others telling me what I should and shouldn’t be doing with my life. Trying to convince me of what they believe my truth should be. I still don’t know the truth, yet I work on it as often as I can. I continue to explore the parameters of self discovery and attempt to be better than I was yesterday but I do it now of my own accord. I test my boundaries and limitations.

I have to be careful though. Oh, the things I wish I could share in an open forum. All the stories I could tell. The things I could say about people and my feelings on specific matters.

Right after the Old Life ended, I made vows to myself which I promised to uphold until my final breath: I would never love again. I would never date again. I would exist as a singular entity and not allow anyone to interfere with my life. I refused to share my baggage with any other person. I promised to keep my feelings under lock and key and not allow others to experience my pain. I vowed to carry out my life as I was supposed to. Eat, work, sleep, rinse and repeat. If moments of fun were possible, I would indulge accordingly but it would be on my terms.

They were vows destined to be broken.

Deconstructing life is not for the faint of heart. It takes a strength which one has to dig deep for. Sometimes all we have to start the dig, is a spoon.

But regardless of the tool, if one is determined to start, it’s worth it in the long run.

Thank you for reading and being a part of my journey. Please subscribe in the provided area to receive a notification of new posts by email. Please give it a like if you like it, feel free to share with others or leave a comment if you wish. See you at the next one.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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