Tag: Dad

7 Reasons My Underwear Feels Too Tight

7 Reasons My Underwear Feels Too Tight

Ever have one of those days where you seem to be just a little out of phase with the rest of humanity, where the best laid plans seem to go astray?  A day where after breakfast you put the milk in the cupboard and the cereal in the fridge. I’m experiencing that today. It’s seems as if everything I touch, anything I do, falls just short of being ‘right’.

morning pages, journal, journaling, writing
Morning pages

Today is a Dad’s day, a day where I take him out and we go to the doctor, optometrist, or in this case to the lab for blood work, and then we go out for lunch. I had planned to leave home a little early so that before I picked him up I could go to Walmart or one of the many electronics type stores to look for a phone case for my new iPhone 5 (and that’s a whole ‘nuther story).

Prior to leaving I was doing my morning pages, you know, that’s ‘writing’ in a book with paper pages and using a pen or pencil. These days I’m not sure how many people still do that…, but I was and before I completed one of my sentences part way through the exercise I became distracted. Well, not distracted at that time really, I put the journal down to check on something I was writing about and that’s when I got distracted. My wife had a question about her ‘new’ iPhone 4s (my hand-me down). There I went, off task, and so far today I’ve not made it back to the journal.

Well that put me behind schedule, not only did I not get to finish the sentence or entry in my journal I never made it away in time to go look at iPhone covers before picking Dad up.

So off on my way I went. I picked up Dad on time (amazingly) and we went to the lab. Fortunately the handicapped parking right in front of the lab was available so we slipped right in, and interestingly enough the lab wasn’t too busy so we waited no more than 5 – 10 minutes to get called. Seems like my day wasn’t a right-off after all, so far things were going well. Lunch was next.

Now that I’m recounting the days events it’s seems like maybe things weren’t so bad after all, lunch went well and Dad paid so life is good and things were looking up. We had a nice visit, he was feeling pretty good and I got him back to his home without further ado. It didn’t stay that way however, or didn’t feel like it anyway.

After dropping Dad off I hit the stores to look for my case, and if I learned anything during that exercise it’s that nothing is cheap, particularly quality iPhone cases. To get the case I wanted, an Otter Commuter, was going to cost between $44 – $50 bucks depending on the store. That’s in addition to any screen protector I bought. My stress was in a holding pattern. A quick look at Amazon (on my phone of course) made me realize that online is where I’ll get them, way cheaper.

As I think about that experience it dawns on me perhaps one of the reasons I feel so stressed and out of sorts is that I am so worried about dropping my phone, and have been ever since I picked it up. Perhaps that is the underlying cause, the reason for my ‘out of sorts’. Whatever the cause….. I feel how I feel and it continued through the day, that ‘skin don’t fit’ kinda feeling.

After arriving back at my home I had to turn around and go back out to run a couple more errands, one of which was to pick up quilt batting for my wife at the local fabric store. I’m afraid I scared the lady in the store, I feel like I went in there with a chip on my shoulder and although I don’t think it’s true I felt like I was surly and abrupt. Damn underwear starting to crawl again.

Next stop was an auto parts store to try and replace one of my malfunctioning wiper blades, that I paid $40 bucks for no less. I went in through the door and must’ve looked like I was ready for bear as the attendant approached my apprehensively and quickly passed me off the reps at the service counter. I suspect he wanted nothing to do with me, if he could see how I felt he was probably wise to defer me. The counterman listened somewhat sympathetically to my plight. I explained the driver’s side wiper leaves a streak in front of my eyes and when I just paid $40 bucks for 1 blade I had hoped it would last longer than 3 months. He murmured back “Well, I guess I could replace it”. Well, thank you very much. Perhaps he could see I was itching for a fight too.

So that sounds like another win doesn’t it? Hang on, not so soon.

Unfortunately when I went outside to swap the bad blade for the good I must’ve touched the fender of the car with my jacket. As I pulled back after installing the blade I noticed a nice brown smudge of dirt/mud on my nice clean black jacket. Argggh, %$”*”&#*, use your imagination to translate. Now I’m fussed and I’m dirty, and if you know me you know I don’t like to get dirty. Especially on tight underwear day.

All I can do is wipe the mud off my jacket and try to wipe my mood clean at the same time. I was relatively successful, nothing damaged and nobody hurt in the process, and proceeded to the next stop. Fill up with gas.

Things went relatively smoothly after that, although getting out of the car prior to filling I noticed yet another blotch of mud, this time on my pant leg. Will it never end I thought (how about wash the car dummy). I exited the car and holding it together somehow inserted my credit card into the gas pump. Perhaps I was too fast, perhaps too forceful, the pump would not accept my card. Another ARGGGH.

Take a deep breath, try again, success this time. The gassing up exercise completed with few casualties, only my spirit.

Two Slurpees in a car cupholder.
Two Slurpees in a car cupholder. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Home I went. But wait, I had to get my wife a Slurpee (Slushy). I don’t understand her penchant for ice cold ice based drinks on a cold winter day but hey, who am I to argue with the light of my life. She wants a Slurpee, a Slurpee she shall have.

Knowing that this stop would be part of my day I came prepared, I had her refillable Slurpee cup at hand. The Slurpee machine operated flawlessly and I proceeded to check out. It was when I went to pay that I was met with a surprise.

Now it’s not like I’ve never used the plastic refillable cup before but when I paid and found the tab higher than expected I gasped.

“Are you sure”, I asked? “How can it be that a Slurpy with a re-usable cup can be more expensive than if I’d used one of the disposable cups?”

“Well”, she said. You never told me it was YOU’RE cup”.

I guess she had me there. And mentioning to her that I ‘assumed’ she knew it was my cup did NOT help the situation. She only replied “when you assume you make an ass out of you and an ass out of me.” She sighed heavily, refunded my money and then charged me a more appropriate, smaller, amount. Personally I think her underwear didn’t fit either, or maybe it’s the moon.

With my chores pretty much completed I forged home, stewing all the while about how I was out of phase, how my skin didn’t fit, how my knickers were too tight, and in my mind plotting what I would write here. It’s a good thing an animal didn’t bolt or a car pull out in front of me, my attention was not all there. I was too busy thinking of what I’d say here.

I did arrive at my home safely though, I don’t think I maimed anyone in transit, at least as far as I know.

After backing into my driveway I did notice a couple beer cans laying on the snowbank in front of my hedge (not mine, I have enough decency to toss mine in the neighbours yard). Here I go again, I feel that familiar tugging sensation near my private parts.

Knowing it’d be futile to pick up the beer cans and carry all my acquisitions (quilt batting, Slurpy) and Dads’ medical history file (that I try to take every time I see him), along with my camera bag and sweater etc., I choose the smart avenue. Pick up the cans, drop them in the recycle, and make not 1 but 2 trips back and forth to the car for the rest of the stuff. That way I can be sure not to f*** up and either drop half the stuff or wipe my clothes OR the new quilt batting on the side of the muddy car. Mission accomplished, all goods arrived in the house unscathed.

Once inside I dropped everything (not literally) and quickly logged on to my WordPress account to quickly disgorge my thoughts into a post, to try and enlighten you to my day and what made it ‘special’. I hope I didn’t bore you too badly and you arrived, like I did at the end of my afternoon, with underclothes that fit. I know the constricting feelings were all just fleeting experiences, tomorrow will be another day and hopefully one where I am in alignment with the universe. Until that time, if your underwear doesn’t fit go without.

Cheers

Coffee, With a Capital C

Coffee, With a Capital C

20120810-091635.jpgWhen I saw the results of this photo’s manipulation I thought Coffee, but not really coffee as the drink, although that what it is, but the stimulating results of Coffee.  Perhaps it’s the result of too much coffee, the edginess you might get, the effect you might see where Colors are Heightened and your Perceptions only appear Sharper.  That kind of Coffee.  The too much Caffeine capital C Coffee.

I don’t necessarily see or feel that this morning.  My morning brew today is conjured up using decaf grounds so I wouldn’t experience such things.  I have found the capital C Coffee to be counterproductive.  It does NOT help my mood.  Necessary at times but not today.

I struggle still this morning with the doldrums of past days.  I question whether to even write or journal about it as it sounds like so much whining.  I consider posting to another blog of mine, one that is private and not for public consumption.  I consider not writing at all.  None of these options bears fruit at this time.

I come back to my original intent of this venue.  It was to communicate how I was feeling, what progress if any I have been making along my journey.  It might mean something to someone, or help them along their way.  Isn’t that what we all want, to help someone else?

I must admit in some cases that journey may have been obscured by fancy writing or stories of humor and light heartedness.  There have been stories of Dad or perhaps family tribulations with other members.  All along though it should reflect where I am on my path, on a road where the way is marked by colors and light or one where the ruts along the way are bouncing me from side to side.  One where my full attention is spent solely maneuvering my way through the myriad of obstacles, trying to stay on the road.

So I don’t know where the road will end.  This particular section of the trip seems to be more challenging but as always I will survive, and along the way try to learn something.  Maybe you can learn something too.

The Pause that Refreshes

The Pause that Refreshes

We are beginning the second leg of our trips now.  We finished one tour of camping duty and have gone back out to battle the roads again.  Yesterday and the day before give us a chance to get caught up on laundry, pick up a few supplies, and take care of one or two personal appointments.  At least one of the appointments was for Dad, taking him for things like blood work etc..  The outcome of that was mentioned in “I Saw an Old Man Walking”.

We drove as far as the Colville Walmart last night, arriving around 8:30 pm or so.  Made for a long day but with some luck we’ll make up for it at the tail end of our trip.  I really do not like the drive-camp-drive scenario, much too tiring for me.  As long as we can get a few days of downtime after these first couple days we should be ok.

Spokane was the destination of choice today.  We only drove as far as Deer Park this morning where we came across an inexpensive municipal camping spot so we decided to bunk there.  $10 bucks a night is within my budget.  That’s good too because I blew the budget a bit while shopping at Costco.

Photo 2012-07-26 5 55 15 PMI’ve been a tad frustrated trying to navigate while using maps and reading road signs so an investment in a GPS was considered.  I didn’t have to consider too long though, actually it was a foregone conclusion.  I picked up a Garmin nuvi 2595LMT.  I hope it’s a good unit.  Too late now anyway but it’s always nice to know you made a good choice.

My posts are likely to be a bit disjointed from here on out, at least for the next week or so.  Nothing new you might think, but because we’re on the road it has been a bit more challenging to put up a good post.  Somehow the preparation on my iPhone just doesn’t do justice to the appearance of a blog.  I can get the content in alright but making it look at least a little interesting is more challenging.

I’ve been using an app called Penzu to write them and then copy/paste in the WordPress app when I get cell service.  I don’t think I can insert pictures as easily though and they seem to lose all formatting when I do the paste.  I have just used the WordPress app to prepare the post but I’ve also lost them that way too.  No chances are taken when I do it this way.

Anyway, I’m off for now.  Time to move on.

I Saw an Old Man Walking

I Saw an Old Man Walking

I saw an old man walking today, poking along the roadside, meandering along his path with the appearance of looking for lost items, perhaps bottles and the such. He was dressed for the excursion with sturdy boots, a small pack, and the ever trusting walking stick. He reminded me of Larry.

Larry, my step-father, passed away a year ago March. I think of him often.

Larry would also often be seen strolling slowly down the streets near our home, his home too as he lived with us. He would stop frequently to chat with neighbors, children, or whoever had the time or inclination to visit with him. He was that kind of guy. he loved all, and was loved by all.

I think about him during times when I meet my Dad. They are/were about the same age and they had the distinct luxury of being married to my Mom. That is about where the similarity ends.

20120726-004343.jpgLarry was full of life, even if he had to search it out from the depths of his being. Toward the end it was a struggle for him, he was forgetful and struggled for words. Continuity of thought often eluded him, and he was terrified he was losing his mind, so worried he would get Alzheimer’s the way his first wife did.

He lived with her disease and raised their children while their mother declined. Finally she became too much of a danger to her family, and herself, and had to be hospitalized.

Despite that past, or perhaps because of it, he wanted to live and experience life. Especially he wanted to experience family. There was nothing more gratifying for him than to have all his children come together, nothing that meant more.

My Dad however sees no challenge in life. He is satisfied to sit, nap, watch tv, and take the occasional lunch break with me. He has no desire to build connections with his family or form attachments with his fellow residents of the “Village”. He has little knowledge of current affairs nor an interest in discussing them. Granted he is suffering early symptoms of dementia and has experienced a number of small strokes but these personality traits are not new. More exaggerated now perhaps but not new. Sometimes I’m so afraid because I’m more like him than Larry.

It would stand to reason of course, I am his blood, Larry was “only” my step father. I am sometimes saddened to say I felt more kinship to Larry as a father figure than my biological Dad. I feel somehow bad saying that. That too saddens me.

20120726-004106.jpgI went in to have lunch with Dad today. During our stroll from the car to the restaurant he said,

“You know who I saw in the mall the other day?”.

I answered,

“Who, Desmond?”,

Des was a co-worker of my Dads.

“No”

he said,

“I saw Larry and Ida”

I was dumbstruck……..Larry was my step father, now deceased, Ida was his first wife who died of Alzheimer’s about 25 years ago. Where on earth was Dad getting this? I didn’t really know what to say so we had some brief discussion about it and moved on. It troubled me.

So I saw an old man walking today. I miss Larry.

The Morning with Dad

The Morning with Dad

Photo 2011-12-12 5 38 53 PMThis morning has been spent with Dads care.  The primary reason was for a trip to the eye specialist for a follow-up check on the condition of his eyes.  This is since he has had his cataracts done, and the subsequent laser surgery to remove the opacity from the sacs that hold his new lens.  The check up was a slow process or at least seems so to me. I think it was an equally tedious event for him.

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First One Word, then Another, One Step, and Again

First One Word, then Another, One Step, and Again

I have heard that when struggling for words, when laboring for a topic, it can be helpful to first put down one word on the page.  After that initial beginning place a second word, then another, and again until your first sentence is complete. Follow the same pattern to compose your second sentence, then move onto your third, and before you know it the words will spring from the page and your post or writings will take shape.  Seems like sage advice.

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Dad’s Day

Dad’s Day

Photo 2012-06-17 10 25 57 PMMy uncle posted a photo on Facebook the other day of my Dad and I.   I was being given a haircut by my Dad when I was about 3 or 4 I’d guess.  I certainly don’t remember the day.

I will show my Dad the pic when I see him today.  I’d be curious to see if he has any recollection of the event at all. Something tells me he won’t, but he has surprised me before and may do so again.

It just depends on how lucid he is on any particular day.

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A Rose by Any other Name

A Rose by Any other Name

20120621-092207.jpgHappy Belated Fathers day to all the dads, or soon to be dads, or wanna be dads.  Any dads are welcome, even pseudo dads.

I’m not sure what made me think of writing about Dads day today and not on Fathers day itself.  Maybe it was busyness, or lazyness, or carelessness, whatever ‘ness it was I am here now.

I have been reminded of the day frequently though as I go about my business around house and home.  I’m reminded when I see the beautiful rose bushes my wife bought me for the occasion.  How many wives buy their husbands roses I ask, and how many of those buy actual rose bushes?  I bet not many.  I am very fortunate for sure.

Another thing that I thought of when posting about Fathers Day were comments made by friends on Facebook.  Essentially they related to passing on well wishes to all the men who provided guidance and love to children, whether their own or others, and mentoring those children by showing them what it means to be a man, and a Father.

Some of these comments were directed to Grandfathers, some to close friends who provided Fatherly guidance in a home where no Father was present.  It applied to the role of Father outside the biological one.

So Happy Belated Fathers day to all those to which this applies.  After all, isn’t a rose by any other name STILL a rose?

Dad's Day is Here Again

Dad's Day is Here Again

Today is a “Dad” day, where I will pick him up and we will do something.  In this case it’s his Eye Specialist appointment, and we’ve only been waiting for a couple months.  I shouldn’t make it sound like a negative thing, I guess here in BC waiting for specialists of any kind is commonplace and to expect otherwise would be hopeful.  I had to rattle the optometrists cage a bit in order to get the referral, they said the appropriate documentation was sent from their end but it seemed an inordinate amount before I could get a confirmation from the specialist.  At any rate it is done now and we will get his eyes checked this afternoon.

Afterwards we will meet with my wife and we’ll do the dinner thing.  It’s been a while since she’s seen Dad, she’s just busy with other things when my other Dad visits come around.  We both want to try and maximize our visits with him, hard to say how much longer we’ll have him.

I’m curious as to which direction the specialist will go with Dad, being as he’s 81.  One position could be to say “hey, he’s 81 and had a good life, why do anything”, but a more humane or human direction would be to say “hey, he’s 81 and had a good life, let’s fix him up and make the last years better”.  Stay tuned for the answer in the next episode.

I’ve been feeling a bit better now my medication dosage has been bumped up.  Still not up to where I was a couple months ago, from a feelins’ and emotions point of view, but better than a week or 2 ago.  Is it the meds or is it something else, like weather, diet, lack of exercise or daylight?  I just know I felt pretty shitty emotionally, wanting to cry at times and generally unhappy.  Hell of a way to live.

I see Gloria, my therapist, tomorrow.  I don’t know what we’ll talk about, perhaps we’ll discuss the online quiz I took about “My Top Strengths”, from the book “Strengths Finder 2.0”.  I don’t recall if I mentioned them previously but the results came out to “Connectedness, Intellection, Empathy, Individualization, and Strategic”.  I’m not sure what I think of the results, nor could I explain them in 20 words or less, but it was an interesting process to complete and hopefully I can take one nugget from it….

So bottom line there’s nothing profound to report, I wish I could say something you’d go “Wow” about but not today.  Stay tuned for further revelations.

Is that all there is?

Is that all there is?

This afternoon I will have another visit with Gloria, my counsellor.  I don’t really know what we’ll talk about, it always seems to be a dynamic event.  Sometimes I feel good going in and other days, well, not as good.

I wish I knew how I was supposed to feel emotionally, I mean I know I’m supposed to feel good, normal, or not bad, at least most of the time.  I also know everyone has ups and downs, good days and bad, but without the scale of where the uppermost “up” is I can only tell you where I’ve been. Sometimes that doesn’t seem very far “up”.  I do have days where I feel good, pretty good in fact, is that all there is?

After our session I’ll pick up Dad and we’ll go for dinner.  I’m thinking perhaps Chinese food, it was good the last time we had it and he enjoyed it, but he may not even remember.  I know that sounds kind of callous, but it’s also true.  He forgets more and more now and I’m surprised sometimes that he even remembers my name.  Certainly he’s forgotten when my birthday is, and maybe that’s normal all things considered, he never was a good one for dates.

It reminds me of a time when we went to a family reunion about 25 years ago.  At that time my Dad’s Mom, my grandmother, was suffering from dementia and after we arrived he went into the house to see her.  He came out a short time later and told us she didn’t know his name, she thought that he was her brother.  The similarity in looks was significant for sure but still his heart must’ve been broken.  I know mine would have been.