Saturday, July 23, 2011


If you are unfamiliar with the term here is what the dictionary says” Love seen as spiritual and selfless and a model for humanity. Love that is spiritual, not sexual, in its nature.” Has anyone ever loved you in this manner? Have you ever seen this kind of love in action? If you haven’t you have missed one of the most beautiful things on this planet. I have been blessed to see it in action for a little over 2 years, in my home. As you know by now 94 year old mother in law lives with us and my angel of a wife who takes care of her daily. Well she really needed a break so I have had the pleasure of watching her for the past 2 weekends. Now, I in no way think I am doing one quarter of the job my wife does, however it does give you a very real picture of exactly what she does do. Unfortunately, her mother is really on a downslide and it is very hard for my wife. I remember watching my father as he started to decline and remember my mother and how everyday she tending him and watched him slide a little further down and how it worn on her mentally and physically. There is no way I can remove this from my wife’s journey, but I want to do everything I can to give her brief periods of respite if possible.

The total selflessness and commitment she has to her mother is unimaginable unless you see it. It is all about her mom all the time. She is always covering her up, cooking her food she will not eat. Making sure she is clean and loved and cared for and wants for nothing. Tirelessly doting over her like a mother over a new born child. I guess the roles have been revised. Some 58 plus years ago I can see the scene in a rural Georgia town with a small demur woman coddling a new born baby and beaming with pride and showing her off to everyone who would give her a minute of attention. Now I watch as that daughter coddles over the mother showing her the way upstairs and covering her up from the breeze of the ceiling fan. Telling her softly how to sit just right so the cat she loves so will sit in her lap for a brief moment, one that her mother loves the most I think. Patiently sitting by her encouraging her to eat and drink doing everything in her power to make certain that these are the very best days of her mother’s life. May we all have this be the end of our days.

But to show the absolute love my wife has she has placed in her will that if she ever gets the way her mother is she has requested she be placed somewhere so other can take care of her freeing her son from this walk she is walking today. WOW, talk about taking one for the team that is unthinkable. To, while totally sane, commit to your love ones that it is ok to place you in the care of others so they do not have to undergo the stress and pressure of taking care of an elderly parent. I stand in awe of her most days but these past weekends I truly understand the sacrifice she has given to her mother. To tell you the truth, if I am able, she will never spend a second in any place, but the home I will provide for her for the rest of her life. I have never known anyone who possesses the capability to love so unconditionally in my life and talked about blessed, she is my wife. I could not be prouder of her. Now you see why the title of this blog contains the words “blessed man”.

Well I am having trouble seeing the screen now thinking about how special this woman is. I can only wish in your life you met someone like her if there is another on the planet. I think I hear “The Link” coming down the stairs maybe it juice time? Think I will ask her about her family I love to listen to her talk about my wife! May we all be loved once in our life in true Agape style let me tell you, since I am, its breath taking!!!!


The Blessed Man

Saturday, July 16, 2011


Well it has happened my dream has come true, so to speak. My son just left for the next chapter in his life, in a far away state. He pulled away from our house, car loaded to the gills, and Lady Gaga’s Bad Romance blaring!! What a picture. One I am sure I will not soon forget.

I wished him luck and told him he could be anything he wanted to be and whatever that became I would be proud of. Don’t know if it meant anything but I felt like it was the right thing to say at that moment.

So it begins; the journey which has been funded by my wife and me with an infusion to get him there and feed him maybe a week. He left talking about opening his own restaurant with his chef buddy down there. Wow to be 22 again! All I think about now is how can I retire. But that’s what 35 years will do to you for sure! I am excited in a way to see exactly how he is going to react to being on his own. I remember the first night I spent in my own apartment and thinking this was the coolest thing ever. Then in 3 weeks the rent came due, then the light gas and water bill. Then the phone bill, car insurance, well you get the picture but that is the last thing you think of when you are enjoying you success over the world for that first brief and, please pardon the word, stupid moment before reality sets in. I wish him that feeling when he gets to his destination.

I guess in reality I have been the gate keeper in his life for entirely too long. He has tried everything to get out of the pen. Now I simply opened the gate. I had a dear friend send me something the other night after I showed my ass at the dinner table. It went something like this. You cannot stand in front of someone and stop them from living their journey. You must step aside and allow them to go and live their life. It hit me like a ton of bricks. I was standing in front of the gate and this boy/man has been trying to get out for a long time. Now I think he enjoyed the safety net for sure and doesn’t yet understand it is gone. But none the less I was keeping him from his journey. Well he is on it now and I wish him luck. I, like everyone other father will one day do, now stand back and let this man go into the world for the lesson that are taught there. They are always hard and painful but so important. The things that do not kill you make you stronger and I have a feeling I have just turned, what will be, a very strong man out into a very unsuspecting world!

So I am telling you all he is on the loose and traveling about with his own mind and ideas. Teach him what you have taught me. Family is first. Friends are your life. Children hurt you more than anything or anyone else in the world. As a sidebar; I will never forget when my mother held my son for the first time she was looking at him with a look only a grandmother can have. I asked you don’t love that baby very much huh? She smiled handed him back to me and said these words that have never rang truer than at this moment in my life. “That little thing right there will bring you more joy than you will ever know and can hurt you more than anything or anyone else in your life. Welcome to my world” As I sat there holding this tiny little child I looked down and tried to think of the times I had hurt my mother and of course nothing came to mind. I simply could always remember the happiness and love she had for me and I her. I am sure she spent many a night hurting because of something stupid I did but never did she mention it, WOW. That’s unconditional love. I guess now I just hope one day I can forget all of the hurt he has caused me and only remember the good times, like my mother did for me. Talk about a mother love, man!!

Well you have been warned! I have given notice he is on the way and ready for whatever comes his way. Teach him well and allow him to become a man we will all be proud of.

Good Luck my son. And as they say in Ireland “He who loses money, loses much; He who loses a friend, loses more; He who loses faith, loses all.”


The Blessed Man

Tuesday, July 12, 2011


Hurt what a word so diverse, but never a happy thing. It is something we never want to do to someone we love, or even a friend. Have you ever hurt anyone? What did you feel like afterwards when you realized you hurt them? Did it bother you? Did it make you hurt?

Hurt is powerful. Hurt is never kind. Hurt, this is crazy, hurts.

I was hurt tonight by the people I love the most in my life and as I sit here thinking about it I find myself trying to take the blame! Maybe I wear my feeling a little close; maybe I am just to on edge these days. Maybe my job has taken a bigger toll on me than I realize. Maybe the fact that my son is reared his head back into the fore front of my life has totally consumed me and I am crippled by his constant greed and total entitlement, BINGO. I am about to do the hardest thing I have ever done in my life. Now I have done some things please understand. I watched my father be eaten alive everyday for almost 6 months and was always by his side. I have made a fare life from a guy who grew up in a 900 Sq. ft. house with 4 women! I was way too smart to go to college, like a lot of my friends. I have lost a 25 years career with not even one days noticed and have risen from the ashes to a point of success that not in my wildest dream did I ever believe I could achieve. So I have been around the block. However, I am about to kick my son out of the boat. He will either sink or swim that is up to him. I do not think, no I know, that no one around me has any clue of the resolve I have in this endeavor. I have been, that father, the one who is always there. The one who rants and raves and curses and then in the end throws out the life line, well as Edgar Allen Poe said in The Raven, Never More! I think what hurts the most is no one believes me. This means the only way they will ever see my resolve is for my son to fail and I do nothing. Think about that. I have to let me son fail to show everyone I have had enough seems and sounds ridiculous. My hope is, of course, he makes a success of himself and proves me wrong, and everyone else, who says he will be a success right! However at the end of the day my resolve is sink or swim on your own. I am a firm believer in real men pick themselves up by their boot straps and make their own way. If I fed him, clothed him, made sure he has money, at what point would he say no thanks Dad I need to do this on my own. Correct, at no point. But that doesn’t make it any easier on me. I guess what I wanted tonight was a little we are with you; you are doing the right thing. We will be there to support you when your son starts testing the waters to help you with your resolve. But all I got was laughed at and told how crazy I was/am. I know sometimes men/dads have to walk the road alone and if that’s my journey I am ready and willing to walk it. I am a guy who hates to be alone especially when it is matters of the heart and yes sir this is one big matter in my heart.

So it begins. I am quite sure this is the first in a long line of posts that will come along as this part of my journey unfolds. But thank the lord I have this place where at least no one laughs in my face. You might be laughing but I can’t see it. And you know what, if you are laughing, good for you at the very least I taken your mind off your troubles. As always I bid you peace and happiness


The Blessed Man

Monday, July 4, 2011


What’s the picture, in your mind, if someone said dance to you? Would it be that first frightful experience standing there against that wall watching the girls dance with each other petrified inside yet dying to ask one to dance with you? Is it a picture of a lovely lady in a Tutu moving gracefully across a deserted stage to beautiful classic music? Or is it the experience itself? You and the person you love taking to the dance floor to your favorite memory of your courting days?

Well I can tell you what it will mean to me for the rest of my life. I am in a very special place. A place called “The Villages” it is in Florida, middle of the state, no beaches, no waves, no amusement rides, just golf courses, swimming pools, and golf carts everywhere. This is an age restricted community. You must be 55 to own property, and they are selling more than houses here they are selling a lifestyle, and one I really like. But you can read about that online if you like here is the link to their website, The Villages.
Every night, on two town squares, they have live music and dancing. Last night my wife and I were at the Square closest to own home for the week. We were sipping our wine, people watching, sitting in the shade, and having a blast. We noticed a couple dancing, him a rough and tumble salt of the earth looking man, head full of white hair. Her a grandmotherly looking pure soul, white hair to match her beau’s, denim skirt and white cowboy boots. As the music played they moved almost as one around the square. Each step as if they had done it a thousand times before. With every step they became the center of attention not only for us, but all in the square. Gliding around each other they were totally lost in the moment and I truly believe they didn’t notice any of the 200 people enjoying the show we were all being treated too. Lovingly he held her hands and with each turn and dip he always had her, she would never have to worry he was always going to be there. What a treat to see. By the time the music stopped they were the only dancers. As the music stopped and they hugged each other the entire square erupted in a huge round of applause for them. Almost embarrassed they shyly nodded their heads in a sign of their gratitude and moved back to their chairs hand in hand. They had to be pushing 80 if not passed a bit. That is what makes this place special.

We were talking to a couple next to us and they were talking about a study that was done on this community. The results were that people who lived here and participated in the active lifestyle lived and additional five years!! I can remember my dad always saying it is quality of life not quantity. And these people have quality to the max!!

Heaven would be to live here and have my Memphis family with me. How selfish is that. Wanting to uproot my family from their other friends and family to bring them here so I can be happy? Well that is just how I feel!!

So I guess we had better start looking at houses! No I think we need a Cul de Sac for all of my family.. Wait a minute they are playing our song! I had better go get my wife I think it’s time to Dance!!!!


The Blessed Man