Wednesday, September 29, 2010

A Shining Moment

I woke up this morning, looked at the beautiful sunrise and realized something that i should have seen many years ago.....I Have A Great Life. I have always gauged success and happiness on the things we have, which i think many people do. Materialistic thinking is such an "American" problem that takes away from family bonding and real friendships.

Looking at the sun coming over the trees and warming up the cool morning air a feeling came over me, an uninvited smile crept from my lips and made me feel light, happy and grateful. I have the most wonderful wife that works hard, understands life better than I and keeps "our" life together. Yes we have problems and go through difficult times but isn't that what real life is all about. I think divorce is made way too easy for people to just get out when the going gets tough. Marriage, love, sex, understanding, giving, taking, laughing, crying, arguing....the list goes on and on but it is what makes being with someone special. Sharing life with someone else and giving yourself to that person ( not just sexually) is such a great feeling.

I am as rich as anyone can be in life and yet i have no wealth. I have three children that are healthy, they may not do or be as i wish but was I the child my parents "blue-printed". I adore my two grandchildren but only see one of them almost daily. My wife is a strong, smart, sensible and very loving. I am blessed with such a beautiful person for whom I would be lost without. We have been together for 24 years and married for almost 23. I cannot imagine my life without her and never want to find out. I love her with all my heart. The sun this morning not only kissed the day hello but it shined upon me and opened my eyes.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Happy Birthday Jeff

Today would have been Jeffery Byron Carter's 48th birthday, he was my cousin that was more like a brother. Jeff was born a week before me in 1962. We had always lived close to each other and grew up like brothers. We always hung out with each other and had the same friends. Jeff took his own life in 1985, i was stationed in Long Beach, California while serving in the U.S. Navy. I received the phone call from my father on the ship. The ship was in port, but to get a call on the ship i knew something was wrong. Jeff's death has had more of an affect on my life than i realize. I have and still do wonder why and if I could have prevented it. I wonder what kind of a person he would be today, where would he be, what would he be doing and would we still be close. Some day I hope to see Jeff again and my heart and mind can heal. I loved him like a brother and miss him tremendously. Happy Birthday Buddy !!!

Monday, August 30, 2010

"Hey Buddy, I Love You"

Finding friends from the past opens up my mind to places and times i haven't visited in many years. Simple things like a Bill Miller iced tea makes me think of playing football in the park with my cousin Jeff, Chuck Dakin, Shawn McCann, John Pittman and many other friends. After the games we would all go to Bill Millers and get some sweet iced tea. Its the same with songs, movies, stores and other little triggers that set off memories. What seems important to me might be nothing and seem meaningless to others but that's what makes memories so personal and meaningful. I also find that things i remember may not be exactly how someone sees them, i am not sure if its because I, the person remembering, remember for a certain reason. I may remember something because it made me happy in which i think i would have a more positive spin on the memory and do the opposite for a bad memory. There are things in my life i still have no answers for and i know there will never be complete "closure" but answers would help me feel better, i think. Jeff Carter was my cousin. He was born on September 24, 1962 exactly one week before i was born. We always lived close to each other our whole lives. We grew up together and were more like brothers that cousins. When i was in the Navy i got a call from my father telling me that Jeff had taken his own life, this was 1985. The coroner said he had taken his life on a Sunday. I had spoken to Jeff on the Friday before and he wanted to know if i could come home to Texas from California on leave that weekend. I had duty and it was too late to find a replacement so i couldn't go. When i heard he had taken his life i felt like if i was there he may have not done it. I know that if a person is going to take his or her life there is nothing anyone can do but its something that i can't and feel i will never be able to believe or get passed. The questions never go away about why he did what he did, how hurt and how painful it still is tears me apart. I have a picture of Jeff that was taken before he rode his motorcycle out to Cali to visit me. I look into his eyes and wonder what the hell was going on, why couldn't he talk to me, what was haunting him to the point of taking his own life. I don't think that people who commit suicide understand the pain they cause others the ripple of pain and heartache is tremendous. Sometimes i look up to the heavens and cry for Jeff, he meant so much to me and i knew we had a special bond but as teenagers and young (male) adults we never said "hey buddy i love you", something that i wish i had done. I talk to him a lot, telling him that i miss him and forgive him. Letting him know he is missed and still loved dearly is something i feel keeps him close to me. I went through the grieving process but i don't think i ever really grieved, i always went back to "why". I am almost positive i will never know and it doesn't matter but it is the one thing that i cannot get passed. Jeff you know i miss you and you can hear me talking to you......I will see you someday....."Hey buddy i love you"

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Callow Hearts

This is the title of my work in progress, its a love story. The lives of two young adults as they find love and the happiness living day to day. It is based on true events that they experienced and the path that they took in life.

Monday, February 22, 2010

From the Minds of Children

1. A little girl was talking to her teacher about whales.
The teacher said it was physically impossible for a whale to swallow a human because even though it was a very large mammal its throat was very small.

The little girl stated that Jonah was swallowed by a whale.

Irritated, the teacher reiterated that a whale could not swallow a human; it was physically impossible.

The little girl said, 'When I get to heaven I will ask Jonah'.

The teacher asked, 'What if Jonah went to hell?'

The little girl replied, 'Then you ask him'.

2. A Kindergarten teacher was observing her classroom of children while they were drawing.. She would occasionally walk around to see each child's work.

As she got to one little girl who was working diligently, she asked what the drawing was.

The girl replied, 'I'm drawing God.'

The teacher paused and said, 'But no one knows what God looks like.'

Without missing a beat, or looking up from her drawing, the girl replied, 'They will in a minute.'

3. A Sunday school teacher was discussing the Ten Commandments with her five and six year olds.

After explaining the commandment to 'honour' thy Father and thy Mother, she asked, 'Is there a commandment that teaches us how to treat our brothers and sisters?'

Without missing a beat one little boy (the oldest of a family) answered, 'Thou shall not kill.'

4. One day a little girl was sitting and watching her mother do the dishes at the kitchen sink. She suddenly noticed that her mother had several strands of white hair sticking out in contrast on her brunette head.

She looked at her mother and inquisitively asked, 'Why are some of your hairs white, Mum?'

Her mother replied, 'Well, every time that you do something wrong and make me cry or unhappy, one of my hairs turns white.'

The little girl thought about this revelation for a while and then said, 'Mummy, how come ALL of grandma's hairs are white?'

5. The children had all been photographed, and the teacher was trying to persuade them each to buy a copy of the group picture.

'Just think how nice it will be to look at it when you are all grown up and say, 'There's Jennifer, she's a lawyer,' or 'That's Michael, He's a doctor.'

A small voice at the back of the room rang out, 'And there's the teacher, she's dead.'

6. A teacher was giving a lesson on the circulation of the blood. Trying to make the matter clearer, she said, 'Now, class, if I stood on my head, the blood, as you know, would run into it, and I would turn red in the face.'

'Yes,' the class said.

'Then why is it that while I am standing upright in the ordinary position the blood doesn't run into my feet?'

A little fellow shouted,
'Cause your feet ain't empty.'

7. The children were lined up in the cafeteria of a Catholic elementary school for lunch. At the head of the table was a large pile of apples. The nun made a note, and posted on the apple tray:

'Take only ONE . God is watching.'

Moving further along the lunch line, at the other end of the table was a large pile of chocolate chip cookies.

A child had written a note, 'Take all you want.. God is watching the apples.'

Saturday, February 13, 2010

The Olympics

Well the Winter Olympics have begun and i have to say the hype is more than the actual feeling anymore. I remember back in the 70's when the Olympics meant so much more than what they seem to mean now. The USA and Russia were in a Cold War and the Olympics took the place of killing each other. Country pride was overwhelming, the athletes "spoke" for their nation with bravery and patriotism. The Olympics were a family event in which families sat and watched and cheered (out loud) for their countries athletes. It seemed we knew the names of our athletes and where they were from. Nowadays things are different. Back then the athletes from other countries were actually from there and lived there, today a lot of the other countries athletes live here in the USA and attend college or work here but they represent their "homeland". I don't think that's right and i feel it should not be done in this fashion. Are they citizens of the USA ? If they attend college here than how does that work ? Do they get financial aid here or pay taxes ? I never really thought about any of this until now. Olympics are mostly about money and i think that's sad. There are a lot of great athletes but if you leave your country to better your life than you basically gave up on it and why would you represent it if you left it. I am cynical about things like this but its who i am.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Falling Snow

This morning i awoke to a snow covered landscape, such a beautiful sight. There is something about the snow that puts a smile on my face. Is it the memories of childhood or just the pure whiteness of the snow ? Watching snow flakes fall from the sky is special, the way they dance all the way down to join the rest of the fallen flakes, to me its very beautiful. Living in North Texas we see snow just about every year but its usually only one to three inches at a time. I remember as a kid in Levittown, Pennsylvania playing in the snow making snowmen. Making snow forts and having snowball fights with my friends. As a grown up snow is different, its now a burden and not as fun as it once was. I still enjoy walking in the snow and watching my grandsons eyes light up as he touches the cold white stuff. Snow to me is still a wonderful sight.....

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Walt Carbliss

Walt Carbliss is the main character in my book. He grew up in the mountains of Western Maryland in a small town called Deep Creek Hollow. He faced many obstacles growing up due to the fact that he was born with only a partial left arm. His life consists of hiding in the woods and daydreaming about being someone else and hunting adventures. Life changes for him when an accident takes him away from his home and into the arms of the Shawnee Indians. Walt discovers he is not what the "white" kids thought of him but that he was a very special kid in the eyes of the Indians. Walt grows up learning about what life, love and friendships are really about. Tragedy later in life sends him deep into the unforgiving mountains to live life the only way he knows......alone.