Real Life

“Life, is like washing a floor. Once the dirt’s swept up and tossed in the trash, the scuff marks scrubbed clean and it’s sparkling pretty beneath the lights, some asshole tracks in fresh mud.” JSM

-Introduction-

Hi. I’m Jeremy. You can call me Jere if you wish.

stick-man

Opened up my stats this morning while waiting for the kiddo to finish getting ready for school, just checking out various behind the scenes stuff, and I realized I had fifty five posts in this thing called, Tales of the Chronicles. This installment makes fifty six. I actually shook my head and did a double take to ensure I wasn’t imagining it. Fifty Five. Never would have believed it. My, how the time flies.

I title this installment, Introduction, due to the idea that not many know anything about me other than what I post here, or on my social media. Since March 2016, I’ve portrayed myself publicly as a person who’s the mirror opposite of who I am today. At this point, most know Dr. Jekyll and are unfamiliar with Mister Hyde.

Chatting with a buddy yesterday, I mentioned, “I guess describing myself as a bit ‘off my rocker’ has served me well. At least I’m enjoying the experience.”

Now, that TotC is starting to pay off a little, I need to tell the readers some stuff about me, outside of what I call, Tales.

Yeah… I’m a bit eccentric in my day to day life. My friends and family know me well. Earlier installments suggest my hobbies are unorthodox and strange, and yet without those focal points, those activities I engage(d) in, I probably wouldn’t be the person I am today. I had to find something to grab hold of and not let go. An anchor point.

The world is a cruel and heartless place sometimes. Bad things happen to good people and if not for the things that truly define our happiness, the world gets tougher, and more brutal.

For me, it was a step by step process; learning what it was I wanted to do, and try. And I’m still learning and trying. No denying that. Through unconventional methods I came to grips with what my personal definition of happiness and success is all about. I refused to believe I was meant for a constant stream of never ending bad luck and unfortunate happenstance for the rest of my days. I’d be damned if the world got the better of me. I’d be damned if I allowed others to control my outcome.

Am I happy? You betcha. Never been happier. It took an estimation of half a lifetime to get there, but absolutely. I am happy. (Whew, had some close shaves while looking for it)

Am I successful? That all depends on the subjective interpretation of success.

In a material, educational, and financial sense? No. I’m not successful and that’s just fine. What I do in my life is not money centered. Am I happy with my “40 hour jobby job” and does my job take care of my family’s needs? Yes, I am happy with my employment, but my employment does not define my success or determine my definition of happiness. It’s an activity I’m forced to participate in.

If the pursuance of individual happiness is the true definition of success, than yes, I am successful. Finding that buried treasure in the back of my mind formulated my happiness.

I prefer happiness. I prefer having the opportunity to find myself and be who I am. Unfortunately, the road to find who I was, and what I wished for, was long, tiresome and seemingly endless.

In my personal opinion it was the journey along that road, which led to where I wanted to be. Now that the road has a gentle breeze blowing steady around me, has branched off elsewhere to parts unknown, is straight and narrow, the sky seems clear, and the walk has become a comfortable stroll, it continues on and on and I don’t wish it to find an end this time.

And I don’t see an end.

I like this path of life. I’m enjoying what makes me happy.

What makes me happy, is writing.

I write. A lot.

I write every day. Sometimes four hours each evening or as little as one if feeling drained, and on the weekend(s) I can go all day if left alone and the coffee IV is hooked up to each arm. I try to keep a blog entry between fifteen hundred and two thousand words per installment, with the exception of the shorter poems I’ve spliced in, and last night I browsed through every scrap of material I’ve stored away and I sit at just over 475,ooo collective words across multiple projects over a five year period.

I am not published.

I am learning.

I am seeking that, which I’ve subconsciously always desired.

When I mention 475,000 words I can be honest and say, head held high, that the words I have on paper are not perfect words. Far from it. Open admission. I’d be a fool to think that. In many cases, what I write is noticeably flawed and I’m big enough to admit it. The best part of my journey along that tiresome road was my eventual understanding of what defines my shortcomings and my faults, as well as what makes me happy.

I know when something is too big for my britches. I can see when I’ve lost sight or have the inability to bring what I visualize into action. I know when I’ve hit a wall, can’t rectify an issue or see beyond my personal veil of ignorance. I own my mistakes, make strides to learn from the situation, I listen to those I respect and have the advice I seek, and I continue with each challenge towards self betterment. I try, try, try and try again. Today, when I fall down, rising to my feet is easier than before.

In the beginning I never contemplated the gratification of applying words to paper. In fact, I ignored the impulse for a period of time and forced myself to fight it off.

Who the hell do you think you are? Why would you want to attempt something so meaningless and difficult? Stick with the dream journal, buddy boy. That suits you just fine. Keep it simple stupid. “That” is a world where you do not belong.

This is coming from someone who doesn’t know what world they belong in.

I really didn’t know. Towards the end of the rocky road journey, and the beginning of the new adventure, if someone asked me, “what do you want to be when you grow up?” I probably wouldn’t have had an answer. Only a half shrug, mumbling “I dunno” in reply.

“Everything I do, I do for my children.”

That’s where it all began. The kiddos.

The best thing to do for them is set a good example. The absolute best example you can set.

Apparently my anger, confusion and the emotions that manipulated my mind during that period of turmoil, distracted me from the little clues I left myself. Over time, from my late teens to that moment five years ago, I was mindlessly jotting notes and one liners and storing them away for no particular reason. I’d write something, and hide it. No order. No “system” or process. Just ramblings, notations, names, doodles and thoughts.

At the end of the difficult path, I had to force everything to make sense. My mind sought logic within the illogical. If I retained and hoarded everything for a purpose, what’s the bigger picture? What connects it all together? Where, or what, is that one unifying thing I keep overlooking? How does this crazy madness I’ve concocted, fit into some semblance of sanity?

That was my immediate problem. I couldn’t make sense of what was happening to me, and around me. I felt so off balance, bouncing throughout the multiverse, phasing in and out of the Twilight Zone and blaming everything and everyone for my troubles, I couldn’t find the opportunity to see inside myself and search for personal recognition. I sought self awareness, but never intentionally looked for it.

It just fell into my lap one night, something in my mind clicked back on, and my path changed.

I’ve never looked back. The experience has changed me into the person I want to be.

This was the toughest of all the installments for me thus far, and I’ve deleted it three times and started over. My difficulty stems from the fact that I’ve broken character, and have lowered my shield a bit for everyone. I’ve allowed myself to be vulnerable. That is not easy for me.

For quite some time I battled between what I wanted to do and what I should focus on exclusively.

Kids, Nancy, job, dog, save money to pay bills, shop, spend money, keep an eye on my children’s small pets, chores.

Splicing in the dream to find happiness, within all that chaos, was a fight I almost lost.

When ‘they’ say, “sitting down to start is the most difficult part” they ain’t just a whistling Dixie.

I’ve made my fair share of mistakes along the way. I’ve sent my work to the wrong people. In some cases, a manuscript or two have been sent away for critique, and a year later I still haven’t heard back. That’s fine and dandy. In fact, those manuscripts have undergone so many radical changes since then, it’s become a whole new project. Night and day.

What made all the difference in the world was what I call the five beta readers. Four of the five agreed to give my work a read through and each reply was positive and uplifting.

The fifth reader was a happy accident.

I sent a copy of my project to a family member and in turn, he handed it off to his friend. The friend of the family enjoyed it and made it a point to say at a BBQ one afternoon, “When are you going to stop working on that online blog thingy, and get back to work on that project of yours?”

Don’t worry, old man. I’m working on it every day.

The five beta readers renewed my spirit. I was given some good hard positive critique, and I’ve been diligent in applying what I can, to strengthen it and make it better.

One reader’s reply, “I liked this. I’m guessing you’re getting an editor, right?”

That was a bridge I never considered. In fact, it brought on a flutter of butterflies in my gut when I pondered it. A casual read by a group of people is one thing. Hearing positive replies from a handful was enough to make me feel good about what I was trying to accomplish, but an editor was a different step.

One day, while believing my foot was nailed to the floor and I was running circles around myself, I reached out to one.

As far as a simple introduction is concerned, that’s it for now. My name is Jere, I love writing and I’ve been engaged in this hobby almost every day since discovering I wanted to give it a try. Creativity and creation has outweighed all the bad in my life and has permanently covered over and buried my negative past.

However, back to the matter at hand. I have an email to re-read and if my eyes aren’t playing tricks on me, the contents say I have six days to leave the Island. Once the nausea and dizziness fades away, I may do something about it I’ll regret.

>>Thank you for reading and following along. If you happen to be new to Tales of the Chronicles, here is the link to the beginning. Please subscribe in the provided area to receive a notification of new posts through email. Please like, share with others, or leave a comment if you wish. See you at the next one.

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