I know I’ve told this story to a number of people before, but here it is again for the uninitiated. In October of 1996, Sheri and I celebrated our 14th anniversary, and she was diagnosed with endometrial cancer. It was an incredibly scary time for us. Just heading into Fall, with all the Ohio landscape turning brown and dying, Sheri prayed that she would see Spring again, with its warmth and colors, and most of all teeming with signs of green life bursting everywhere. With surgery and radiation, she did indeed see the world turn green again, and we celebrated. And so began a special ritual for us, every Spring, welcoming the Green.
“For the first time in my life, I’ve stopped thinking of myself as a child imitating an adult.”
~ Ben Stiller in While We’re Young
I’ve only seen a clip from the new film but that sentiment so resonates within me. I get it. In my case, I like it. I don’t feel old, not as old as 52, but also for the first time I don’t feel like a kid trying to fake it as a grown up. I’ve arrived. I feel a sense of confidence, a sense of durability, an actualization.
Part of it is because of all I’ve handled in my life, the crises I’ve been dealt, the firestorms I’ve endured. If you don’t laugh you’ll cry until you cry anyway and then you learn to laugh again. You don’t think about tomorrow or what else might go wrong, you just do what you need to do to make it through today. You learn to trust God Read the rest of this entry →
This will at least weed out the big Harry Chapin fans among you.
Life takes us where we allow it, with the choices we make along the way. Sometimes we coast on the stream and allow others to make the choices, often we make choices as a compromise or jointly, but sometimes we make the big choices that singularly affect the destination. I can look back and see those points in life, when time split because of the choice I made, the path I took, and events unfurled as a result of my choice. I take full responsibility.
My other best friend in high school and I had our futures all mapped. Mine was in the arts, hers in journalism. I was headed to Pittsburgh to college, she to Akron, and on to our careers. Then life took Pittsburgh out of my hands at that time and I chose not to attend another college, I bummed a summer, lingered in love, and chose to go instead into cosmetology as a fluke, where it turned out, I had a great deal of talent.
All I wanted to do was write stories, draw comics and do theatre, but (sigh) I needed a trade.
So then life, life, life, life, yada yada yada, Pittsburgh eventually, but then back to Ohio, never to escape again. I got the arts degree but came back to one of the worst job markets Read the rest of this entry →