I was talking to a friend today about forever. As in, do I believe in forever? It’s actually a great question that I have never thought about directly. Instantly, I thought of my children and know I will love them forever. I know somehow some family members can lose something and not have love forever, but I’m so sure that I will love my guys forever that I know that would not be an issue for us. I believe in forever when it comes to loving my boys.
I’m not a religious person so I can’t pull anything from that realm. As I mulled, she said plastic. Unfortunately, she might be on to something. It made me think of Twinkees. She then told me to Google ‘container ship rubber duckies.’ Wow! I had never heard about the 20,000 or so rubber ducks that have been floating around the world since a shipping container spill back in 1992.
What else? I’m still drawing a blank. I guess that supports my belief that everything is temporary. Except for my love for my kids of course. Although what happens when I die – that gets to be way too deep of a conversation that I don’t have answers to anyway.
Everything is temporary. I’ve written about this before and I’ll talk your ear off about it with examples ranging from Burning Man where if you don’t participate or engage, it literally might not be there tomorrow (it might burn) to going on a trip with a friend – if you don’t go when the opportunity presents itself, you may never go.
My next tattoo will be a line from a Dylan Thomas poem. “Rage rage against the dying of the light.” Interpret it how you want. I understand he wrote it as his father was dying. I think of it as a reminder to live in the moment and never take anything for granted.
I consider myself a relatively drama-free person. But the last two months have been overflowing with emotions. I think I’ve been on my period. Ha, I wonder how many women want to smack me for that comment. My last two months have been an old school country song. Thank goodness I don’t have a dog or I’m sure he’d be a goner.
Yes, I broke up with my girlfriend. Work has been a bit of a bear with a longstanding client possibly leaving us and a pretty big hiccup with another, all requiring my best fireman skills to douse the flames. And one of my work peeps has crazy health shit going on at home with her family where sometimes I wonder how she hasn’t checked herself into the funny farm. I fear the day she comes in and has news that nobody so young should have to endure. One of my best friends is so pissed off at me that a relationship that I considered to be brotherly may be over, in large part because I’m not afraid to express my feelings and he won’t own up to his shit because I’ve hurt his feelings.
There is more but we all have our crap to deal with and I’m not looking for any sympathy or woe is me support. I can handle this, but I’m just saying I don’t like it. And it illustrates how quickly things can be taken away. One minute you think all is well and perhaps even take things for granted, the next second its gone.
I was in Arizona this past weekend visiting close friends. I happen to have a few relatives on my dad’s side in the Phoenix area but we aren’t close – it has a lot to do with the fact my dad and his brother had a family spat that lasted for most of my adult life until they mostly reconciled ten or fifteen years ago. The ripple effect is that I never got to know my uncle as an adult nor do I spend any time with my two cousins or their families. And that is it on my dad’s side.
I was telling my buddy House a tiny bit about this when he picked me up from the airport. We dropped off my stuff and met up with my buddy MoMo. And I got to finally meet House’s beautiful (inside and out) girlfriend Meghan. And the next day I got to see a dear Burning Man friend GoLauri. It was cool to be around old friends and new.
House and Meghan had a couple of poorly timed conflicts with my visit so they had to disappear for a few hours on Friday night and then again on Saturday. No worries, I totally understood and had MoMo and GoLauri to hang with, in addition to being really comfortable hanging by myself and making friends with strangers.
But then when I got home Saturday night around 8p to wait for House and Meghan to get back, I found out my uncle died. The one right there in Phoenix. It wasn’t the most surprising news in the world – he was late 80s and was in a home suffering from dementia. I wasn’t close to him. But he’s my dad’s only brother. I named my little guy after my uncle and dad in a way by having his middle name be Jack, the name my dad and uncle George called each other growing up and through their adult years (until the family spat).
I feel bad for my dad. He is 86 and his health has deteriorated quite a bit the last few years. My parents have a trip scheduled to fly into Phoenix in two weeks where they were going to see George and then drive on to San Diego. They just missed him. I was right there in Phoenix and didn’t even make plans to see him and I just missed him.
My mom says my dad is fine. He might be relieved he doesn’t have to see his brother in the state he was in at the nursing home. We already went through that with his mom (my grandma) and it isn’t pleasant. But my dad didn’t come to the phone. He’s lost his only sibling and is likely reminded of his own mortality. I don’t think he wanted to talk about it. I can relate.
I decided to crash on Saturday night rather than go back out with the gang when they were ready for me. I didn’t tell them why. Nor did I tell them on Sunday Funday or Monday when I left for the airport to get home. I don’t handle death well. I haven’t been around it much and I don’t know what to do. I know I didn’t want to talk about it, even when it came up with Meghan and House while at breakfast Sunday. I kinda felt like a fraud anyway. I really didn’t know my uncle. The last time I saw him was with my ex wife and my older kid cuz the younger one wasn’t even born yet.
I drank too much this past Sunday Funday. And I was a bit of a jackass to my friends and their friends. I’d like to blame it on my period.
I have all this crap going on and then this happened. And it hit me how everything is so temporary. Something I already know, but not everybody else does. I had this great girlfriend, but we really aren’t meant to be together forever (there is no forever). I have these great clients that turn not so great and eventually we will part ways (there is no forever). I have a right-hand person that I love as a co-worker and a friend who might lose a husband way too soon (there is no forever). I have a buddy that treats me like an acquaintance rather than the brother I thought we were (there is no forever). I no longer have any uncles and my dad lost his only sibling (there is no forever).
Rage rage against the dying of the light. Take nothing for granted. Do not put off something you want to do, no matter how hard it might be to achieve. Tomorrow may never come. And what you have now won't be there forever.
Nothing is forever. Even the plastic ducks are disappearing. Some sank, some washed up ashore and have been taken away, others succumbed to the sea and managed to deteriorate into fish food.
Nothing is forever. Except for my love for my children. So I’ll continue to appreciate them and respect that I get to be their father. But I’ll be gone someday and wherever I am, I will have loved them like no other. And they will have to move on.
Because nothing is forever.