Posts Tagged ‘Parent’

What We Learn From Failed Relationships

Posted: May 27, 2014 in Absolute Truth, Abuse, Anxiety, Arguments, Blog, Blogging, Change, Childhood, Children, Coping, Crisis, Culture, Dating, Debates, Depression, Diary, Dilemma, Divorce, Dreams, Emotional Abuse, Ethics, Evil, Faith, Family, Fatherhood, Fear, Forgiveness, Freedom, Fun, Greed, Grief, Growing up in abusive homes, Health, Humor, Inside My Mind, Journal, Kids, Learning, Lies and broken promises, Life, Lists, Living Your Dream, Logic, Love, Lust, Marriage, Mental Health, Mental Illness, Misc, miscellaneous, Moral Theories, Morals, Motivation, Mourning, NA, Opinion, Pain, Parent, Parenting, Personal, Philosophy, Poems, Poetry, Published Author, Quotes, Random, Random Thoughts, Rants, Rejection, Relationship Issues, Relationships, Sadness, Self-esteem, Self-Help, Self-image, Social Anxiety, Social Debates, Society, Sorrow, Spirituality, Stress, Suffering, The Invention of Lying, The Philosophy of Lyrics, The Philosophy of Quotes, Things That Give Me Anxiety, Thoughts, Top Ten Lists, Uncategorized, Unity, Verbal Abuse, Writing
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I would first like to start off by thanking all of my readers and subscribers. I learned today; I have readers from 61 different countries. I think that’s pretty bad ass. I am aware that my readership grew from the topics of philosophy, theology, and madness. So bear with me as I stray a bit from those topics. Today I would like to release that which has been permeating in my mind. I would like ponder for a moment the importance of learning from our mistakes in a failed relationship. Through all of this I am trying to maintain a positive attitude and outlook. So here we go.

The one thing I can say with out a doubt is I am far from sainthood. I have made my more than my fair share of mistakes, and bad decisions which played a role in the overall destruction of my marriage. I am ashamed and consumed with intense guilt because of this. This combined with my wife’s lies, and infidelity has allowed me to see the light. I am sure I could write a 200 page paper on this topic, but I will try to keep this short and sweet.

There are 10 main things I have learned in my failed marriage. Now mind you there are far more than 10, but as I said this is not a 200 page dissertation on my failed marriage. I will do my best to not place blame, because it doesn’t do anyone any good. Some things on this list will undoubtedly overlap, even though this is the case I feel each one deserves to be mentioned. Without further ado here is my list of 10 things I learned from my failed marriage.

  1. Never Lie: I did a lot of research after I found out about what my wife did. I learned that in humans our first response when we know we have done something wrong, that will ultimately lead to a negative outcome our immediate response is to lie. We do this for two reasons one we want to avoid conflict, and two we don’t want to get in trouble. Since I am a proponent of the tabula rasa theory (mind being born as a blank slate.) I feel this is a trait we learn as children, which carries over into adulthood. Lying to your partner no matter how small is a terrible idea. We can overcome this childish trait, by knowing our partner as well as ourselves, focus on understanding and know that mistakes are actually learning opportunities.
  2. Never Cheat: I think this one doesn’t need further explanation. It’s a painful and shitty thing to do to those we love. Even if (insert some attractive famous person) wanted to be with you, nothing is worth hurting the one you love.
  3. Trust: it should go without saying that if the two things listed above are followed then trust shouldn’t be an issue. Unfortunately we all carry the baggage of past hurt, what we need to realize is who ever we are with now is not the person who caused us hurt in the past. I would imagine it would be a good idea to be open and honest about these past hurts. A relationship that is not built on trust is like trying to build a house of cards on a windy day, neither of these two examples will be successful. The perfect advice one can give in fostering trust in a relationship is this; if you would not say or do something if your partner was there with you, then you definitely shouldn’t do it.
  4. Accept and Love Each Other For All Their Good Qualities, As Well As Their Flaws: let’s admit it people, no one is perfect, and those who claim to be are probably the most screwed up of them all. Initially I am sure that we all fall in love with our mates good qualities. During the “courting” or “honeymoon” phase of a relationship, it is kind of like interviewing for a job, you really are not being completely honest your just trying to get the “job.” As the relationship progresses and begins to become serious is usually when we start to notice each others flaws. The important thing is that we learn to love that person regardless of their flaws. In fact I believe our flaws can become the most exciting part of a relationship. When you love the good qualities along with the flaws you know you have found true love; when everything seems to fit like a glove.
  5. Never Put Your Partner Down and Break Their Will: this topic has a lot to do with item number four. There are just two things I would like to add. The first is from an article by John Gottman, PhD in an article titled “4 Signs of A Troubled Marriage” Here is the link.http://affiliatedpsychologicalservices.com/4-signs-of-a-troubled-marriage/ Gottman talks about “The Four Horsemen of The Apocalypse” which are clear signs you are headed for a divorce. The first two he brings up is “Criticism” and “Contempt.” If anyone out there grew up in an abusive home where as a child you were faced with these two horsemen, having to deal with such things in a marriage is a key ingredient in a divorce. If you tell someone something negative about them enough times, with the right amount of nastiness it is only natural the other party will believe what they are being told, and inevitable this is who they will see when they look into the mirror. I don’t think people are aware of how serious the long term damage can be. My second point comes from a line from the song “Weight of The World” by Blue October. “Don’t bother changing things that won’t give into changing.” It is one thing to help your partner grow and become the best person they can be, but in the process don’t try to change who they are inside. If you are hell bent on trying to force someone to change, there is always medication. If this is your goal please take to heart one of my quotes “Medication is to fix the people we don’t like.” If you feel you need to medicate your partner, it’s time to call it quits.
  6. Freedom: As your relationship grows, it is imperative that you do not take away your partners freedom. When I say freedom I am not referring to allowing your partner to go out all the time neglecting the relationship, and engaging in behaviors which fall into the first three categories I listed. When I say freedom, I say that it is clearly healthy to share and be with each other, but it is also healthy to have a respectful life outside of the relationship. I have made this deadly mistake in one of my relationships, and I have now been on the receiving end of how damaging smothering and isolating your partner can be. If your relationship is built on a strong foundation of trust and respect this should be something you encourage each other to do. I have always admired the relationship between my best friend of 26 years and his lovely wife. I will not mention names, but I truly hope one day I can figure out whatever their secret is, and apply it to my future relationships. I am going to encourage them to write a book.
  7. Support Their Dreams: There is nothing more precious and sacred than some ones hopes and dreams. For some our dreams appear to us when we are young, others do not fully realize their dreams until they discover who they are. When I was young I had the normal boyhood dreams to become a professional football or baseball player, unfortunately like normal boys those dreams were not meant to be. Beyond those two options, I really didn’t have anything else that drove or inspired me, until the 5th grade. Long story short I ended up doing many writing assignments and I remember my teacher signing my year book, saying she could one day see something I have written being published. I was not a very well behaved child, so positive reinforcement from the teachers I tormented was rare, but from that moment my dream changed. I wanted to become a professional writer. As I grew older I held onto this dream, and wrote in private. I never thought anything I would write would be read let alone published. Again long story short one of my poetry books was published, I started this blog, wrote two children’s books, and two other poetry books. Needless to say this was the greatest I had ever felt about myself, because I accomplished something I never thought I could… my dream. I did not receive support from my partner, and in fact was highly put down and discouraged from continuing to write, until finally I had no option but to stop writing. The details behind this are not important at this moment.
  8. Open & Honest Communication: You would think this is a no brainier, but for my marriage and I would imagine many others this proved to be too challenging to overcome and sowed the seeds to our divorce. I feel if you have all seven of these things listed above then number eight would be a given, but if you take out one or two of the above it makes communication a challenge. I avoided and ran away from open and honest communication. I could make a laundry list for why, but this is already becoming too long of a post. Mainly I was afraid to honestly look in the mirror, I was scared I was going to receive an unhealthy dose of items four and five. Regardless of those reasons it is on me for failing in this aspect of our marriage. I need to take ownership for this, and like everything listed learn to not make the same mistakes. It is very difficult and challenging for me to be social, and communicate even with those closest to me. I know this is something I need to work on, but what always ends up playing over and over in my mind is the Pink Floyd lyrics from the song “The Final Cut” which I will add at the end.
  9. Be A Selfless Lover: This is actually one area where I have and feel the most accomplished. I felt I needed to add this, because in my experience men in general put their intimacy needs, or the final “outcome” before their partners. I will not go into detail in case my mom is reading this, but as men our primary focus and goal when it comes to being intimate is placing our partners needs before ourselves. Any man can do his business and be on his way, but this is a man who has failed. When it comes to intimacy your only goal and desire should be the feelings and ultimate “outcome” of your partners needs. Everything else should be secondary.
  10. Find Your Genuine Light: Tomorrow I am going to post a quick poem describing the meaning behind this comment. I do not believe in soul mates. I do not believe there is only one true love for everyone. I believe for everyone, there exists many individuals who could be considered your genuine light. I believe they are rare, but they are out there. My advice is if you feel you are holding your genuine light, don’t let them slip away because you cannot be certain another one will come around to light up your life.

 

“And if I show you my dark side
Will you still hold me tonight?
And if I open my heart to you
And show you my weak side
What would you do?
Would you sell your story to Rolling Stone?
Would you take the children away
And leave me alone?
And smile in reassurance
As you whisper down the phone?
Would you send me packing?
Or would you take me home?”

Pink Floyd

These lyrics describe perfectly why it is so difficult for me to open up to people, which hinders my ability to effectively communicate.

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My daughter is in the sixth grade, and she has now started to “date” boys. Nicole thinks she is way too young to be having boyfriends, where I feel it is normal and harmless behavior. I remember when I was in sixth grade, I had girlfriends and it seemed to be, a normal practice at this time. Sixth grade is just a time where boyfriends/girlfriends are just the in thing to have. She has taken the next step in life, and this is part of that next step. The question I pose today, is if she is too young to have a boyfriend?

I think the whole thing, is all innocent at this time in her life. The biggest events, which seem to happen, when you are boyfriend and girlfriend at this age, is hugging and holding hands. She did have one boyfriend, this year who wanted to take that next step and kiss, but she was not ready to do that, so he broke up with her. I am happy that my daughter knows her own comfort level and boundaries enough to say no. I have noticed, that they tend to throw the word “I love you” around the day they start to date, which at first bothered me, but then I thought back to when I was young, and that word was thrown around all to casually. These kids have no concept of relationship love, so I am not really concerned over them using the word, because it means nothing.

I also think, dating must be normal at this age, because they have started doing school dances. I again, think back to when we started doing school dances, and one of the thrills was asking girls to go to dances with you, which is what they are doing today. You would think as her father, I would be freaking out over all this, but I am really okay with the whole thing. It is not, that I am not protective of her, because papa bear syndrome runs rampant with all my children. I guess, I just see this as normal innocent behavior for a sixth grader. When I think back I was actually “dating” in the fifth grade, and I am sure things have not changed much from then to today.

I am sure as time goes by, I will be less and less okay with her having boyfriends, considering as how things progress physically as they age. I was a bit nervous, but excited when she had her first kiss, but I will not feel the same when it comes to her first French kiss. Anything after the French kiss completely terrifies me. I think I may get her a chastity belt when she turns thirteen. I may think this behavior is all innocent and fine now, but I can guarantee you as she gets older I will become the dad who holds a shotgun the first time I meet with her boyfriends.

So, which one is it, should she be allowed to date, because it is a normal right of passage at her age, or is this completely inappropriate? As I have said, in looking back at my childhood, this was all normal behavior, thus I am totally okay with what she is doing.

Tell me what you think of these songs:

“Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to people of good will. We praise thee, we bless thee.” From Gloria Canon

“We are marching in the light of God” From An African Celebration

“Let us sing altogether to the Son of God. He is born as our saviour and redeemer. Come see the Christ child in the manger. The sweet little babe, Christ the King.” From Psallite

“Holy, Holy, Holy Lord of hosts. Holy, Holy, Holy God of power and might. Heaven and earth are filled with all your glorious works. Blest are they who worship in your Holy Name. Holy, Holy, Holy Lord of hosts. Holy, Holy, Holy God of power and might. Holy, Holy, Holy evermore the same.” From Sanctus

So what do you think of when you read these lyrics? Would you say these are religious songs? Would you come to the conclusion that perhaps these songs would be sung in a church? I come here to you today as a pissed off parent to find out these very same songs were performed by my daughters PUBLIC school choir. I was never informed and there was never a permission slip given to me asking if I thought this material was okay. I never received anything from her school. I did not find out about this until I was sitting in the stands and the program was passed out.

I was immediately outraged by this! I could not contain my emotions. I expressed my frustrations to my wife which started a separation of church and state debate in the stands of the auditorium. I am sure the parents sitting around us were either offended or amused by our banter. In my opinion this shit does not belong in our public schools. This is a clear violation of separation between church and state. You can clearly see these songs are religious based. The lyrics do not try and hide there purpose. It is just BAM in your face. I wanted to get up; grab my daughter and pull her from this performance. I will be contacting her school today. But wait it doesn’t stop there!

I was chatting with my daughter one day afterschool and she was telling me about how in social studies they are learning about Judaism. She recanted the story of Moses and the Pharaoh and the plagues that came to the Egyptian people. She went on to say Moses parted the Red Sea in order to get away. She then explained how Moses reached Mount Sinai and spoke to the burning bush, and about how on the top of the mountain God gave Moses the Ten Commandments written by Gods finger on two stone tablets. They were teaching her this as if it is a fact not a religious belief. I am all up in arms over this. I was irritated when she was telling me about this, and I had to immediately correct her and explain that these events are not real facts they are a man made fairy tale. She has been my daughter long enough to already know this to be true. I think these songs really pushed me off the ledge.

I really want to call her school and confront the principle on this subject. I will try to refrain because I am not sure how articulate I will come across. Now back to the debate with my wife. She was telling me I am an extremist in my views and that I am a hypocrite because I am making such a big deal about this. I am not sure if she really gets my point. Here is my stance. I do not think kids should be exposed to religion until they hit the age of reason. At this point I am all for them seeking out faith if they so choose. If my daughter is fifteen and chooses to go to church I will support her. If she chooses to become a Muslim I will support her. If she so chooses the Tao or to believe in nothing I will support her. Of course I would love to expose her to my belief system, but that goes against what I believe is right for my children. I do not think exposing children to religion is the right thing because their minds are not fully developed and frankly they are gullible and will believe just about anything.

My youngest son (6) has been recently talking a lot about God, Jesus and Heaven. I am not sure where these ideas are coming from but I am not okay with this. He has been told this by someone and now looks at it as a fact. I mean c’mon this kid still believes in Santa Claus so that about says it all. I made a mistake with my daughter. She used to go to this Christian daycare center and was exposed to religion. Every time we talked I had to reprogram her to set her straight. I told her these things are fairy tales and are false teachings. I succeeded in swaying her away from Christianity. She really enjoyed the movie “Religulous” which makes me think she is probably an atheist. This point is where I can see I am hypocritical. I didn’t want to do the same thing to my son so I just tell him that this is something people believe, and is not rooted in any logical form of thinking. I really doubt he understands what that means, because he still believes in Jesus just as much as he does Santa Claus. I would love nothing more than to start schooling him in Taoism, but like I said this goes against my belief system.

All I know is I am pissed about her social studies class. Something should have been sent home informing the parents what they will be teaching when it comes to religion. I am also pissed because her choir teacher should have sent something home asking the parents if they are okay with this material. I am a firm believer in the separation between church and state. God has no place in our government and sure as shit has no place in our public schools.

Every time I think I can no longer be surprised by my daughters’ mom Melissa Fleury, she proves to out due herself. This is the first time I have used her actual name in a post; as you know I have been lovingly referring to her as Satan. She was supposed to pick my daughter up for their four-hour visit two Sundays ago. It was my wife’s birthday weekend so we were not sure if the change would work or not. I told her I would let her know Sunday morning if we had a change in plans. I texted Satan in the morning letting her know she could take her. I never received a response back so I kept checking with my daughter to see if she had heard from her. It was getting close to the pick-up time so I decided to ask my daughter once again. She told me that her mom text her and can’t see her this week because she was up all night praying and is too tired to visit. Upon hearing this I was a bit shocked, but then started laughing over the absurdness of the excuse.

Melissa is a perfect example of religion gone wrong. She has always been in my opinion lacking normal intelligence. Because of this void of a brain it had been difficult dealing with her in the past, but once religion got a hold of her it totally twisted her up. Throughout the whole time she wasn’t seeing her daughter she often referred to how God was trying to “teach” my daughter a lesson by not allowing my daughter to see her and her sisters. She has referred to how she has been praying that our daughter would just admit that her husband was not mistreating her when in reality he had. It just amazes me how a semi-functional human being can be totally misguided by faith. She has gotten to the point of extremism.  

It is because of these things and others I had to stop them from talking on the phone without it being monitored. When she wrote her final letter to our daughter saying she was no longer going to see her anymore she stated how she had to pray really hard before the answer came (I am assuming from God) to her which was to no longer see her. I am not a Christian, but I am pretty sure God would not condone a mother abandoning her first-born daughter.

Either way this woman is insane. To say you cannot come and see your daughter because you are hung over from praying is just borderline psychotic. She still had to get up and take care of her other two daughters, but couldn’t take four hours out of her day to see her first-born child, which is much easier to care for then her younger daughters. The sad part is my daughter thought this was a normal acceptable excuse. I know she has come to grips with the fact that her mom is not a very good mom, but still. I think part of the reason she wasn’t coming was because there was a Green Bay Packer game on Sunday night. Her husband (Fuck Face) is from Wisconsin so he makes a big deal out of these games. I think he didn’t want to have to watch the girls so he made Melissa stay home. It has been one year and eight months since she has seen her sisters and this would have been a perfect time to allow her to see her them. I know my daughters’ youngest sister was just a baby the last time she saw her, and the other was only two. I am pretty sure they are unaware they even have a sister.

I am on the fence whether she was really up all night praying and was too tired to come and see her. The excuse just seems so out there and unbelievable… which is why I tend to believe it.

I appreciate the kind words from those of you who commented on my post the other day. I was going to respond to each one individually, but decided to lump them together into a small post. Although I appreciated these words, I must say I am not worthy of such encouragement. My son’s picture still sits on my desk, and I can see him judging me every moment of the day. I see his perfect smile and sense it is somehow fake. The same fake smile I had to put on my face in the name of school pictures. Just to show the world you are happy when in reality you are broken inside. What he is feeling behind that smile is tearing me apart. I am sick to my stomach and want to throw this picture off my desk, and hide behind my wall of lies and justifications. I cannot bring myself to do this. I feel this symbolically degrades him as a human being.

I received some advice from Rambling to sit my kids down and ask them their assessment of me as a father. I am far too much of a coward to ever do this. I am afraid to honestly hear what they think, because the answers I will hear will further cause me to look in the mirror of my true self. The one thing I hate more than anything is my reflection in the mirror. To see who is peering back at me is to much to handle. Everything and everyone I hate is in those eyes.

My kids are the perfect reflection of what I will never become. What kind of person am I who taints that reflection with my imperfections? I wish I could just flip a switch and shed this skin of mine and walk out a new person. What is my purpose in life if all I do is fail those who depend on me the most? I tried speaking to my therapist last night about this haunting picture, and it only made the pain that much more real. I am being tormented by this reality. The one thing I promised to myself was if I ever had children I would not fail them. I vowed to not make the mistakes my father and step-father made. I hated them so very much I could not imagine doing my kids like that. Flash forward to the here and now, and they are my reflection. This reflection I despise so.

My wife always tells me I am a good dad or a good husband when I want to be. If this is true, then why am I not this good father and husband the majority of the time? I would say I am a good father and husband 5% of the time. Does this mean I am willfully choosing to be a fucking prick 95% of the time? If I have this choice then why do I choose to let everyone down? If this was so simple then why am I not what I wish to be? I wrote a poem called “Broken Dolls” in this poem I said “broken dolls from broken homes, build broken homes of their own.” Am I building the very same broken home I hated my parents for creating?

I am a shitty person. I am an addict, I am a cheater. I never have, nor will I ever be a good person. Everything I touch, everything I love turns to shit. The last thing I can deal with is knowing I am decaying my children’s innocence with my shit stained hands. I think the thing that is most fucked up is I have the power to change this, yet I choose not to. This I think illustrates who I truly am inside.

I started writing and never finished a post last week about how thankful I was for not being consumed by a deep depression for some time. I feel like it has been a lifetime since I ventured into the darkest regions of my shen. I should have knocked on wood, because since yesterday I have steadily crept into a downward spiral of darkness. I am trying my hardest to lighten the blow, and recover before it gets to bad. During this depression free time I have by no means been stable. My moods have been all over the place for a few months, but I have been void of any out of control manias or crippling depressions. The times I had hit a small mania or minor depression I was able to quickly rebound from it. I was considering myself lucky, until today. I do not know exactly what is wrong with me, but all I want to do is crawl into bed and cry.

I have been sitting here in my office trying my hardest to fight back the tears. I think this episode started when I was looking at a new picture of my youngest son on my desk. They did this new style at his school this year which I am really digging. I must say this is the best school picture I have ever gotten. I just got lost looking at his picture, when all of a sudden tears started welling up in my eyes. I was a bit overwhelmed by this since I am not one to cry. If I were to guess; I would say I only cry two to three times a year. I at first thought these were tears of joy, but then I was slapped with this gut wrenching sense of guilt. I started to look into myself to figure out why I am feeling so much remorse. I started to do some deep searching and came to the conclusion my guilt lies in my failures as a father.

I am by no means the worst father, but I can guarantee you I will never win father of the year. I have made many mistakes as a father, many of which I would sell my soul to take back. It is not like any of my mistakes have been ones of violence. I have been angry as hell at my kids, but would never harm them. The things I wish I could take back are the many small things that equal up to the big things. As I sit here reflecting, the only conclusion I come to is I have not been a good enough father. If anyone out there is a parent you can understand the tormenting feeling this reflection will cause. There is one thing in life you should not fail at, and that is being a good parent. I wonder if my kids were asked “do you have a good dad” would they answer yes without hesitation or would they need to think about it? I believe they would need to give that one a second thought.

I am trying to take inventory and convince myself I am a good father, this is becoming increasingly difficult. There may be a thing here or a thing there I do well as a parent, but I seem to fail everywhere in-between. I feel like I am not there enough for my children. It is so hard for me to just be in the moment and enjoy what I have. I am always lost somewhere inside my mind. I am either focusing on my writing, sucked into a down causing me to be emotionally unavailable, or I am consumed with distracting mania (my children’s favorite mood.) I feel like I do not give them the attention they deserve. I have cut the amount of time I spend writing by 75%, but still feel like I am a stranger to them. I feel like I have been in this cycle forever where I am only partially available. My mind is so scatter brained all the time it is hard for me to focus on things. I tend to get distracted off into so many different directions. I never feel like I am just right where my kids need me to be.

I am feeling such intense guilt over all the times I have yelled at them. There are so many better ways to speak to your children, and I take the cowards copout by reacting with the only emotion I feel comfortable expressing. Inside I am by no means an angry person. I am normally very Zen, but the minute I feel any negative emotion it comes out in anger. I cannot cope with these deep scars I have, and instead of feeling through it I lash out. I think this is a defense mechanism I developed long ago. I hate myself for not having the commonsense to just walk away and collect my thoughts. I know what it feels like to grow up with a yeller, and let me tell you it is horrible. The thought of me speaking to my children the way my step-father spoke to me makes me want to vomit. I try to make myself feel better by saying “all parents yell at their kids from time-to-time,” but this is not working. I feel like I have become the one man I despise more than anything, the man who traumatized me as a child. If I am doing the same things to my kids that he did to me, then reason would conclude I am him. I cannot deal with this reason. I cannot cope with this reality.

I just want my kids to be healthy and happy, and I worry they can’t be healthy with me around. I have failed them in every single way I possibly can. I am having a really hard time with this. I can almost feel the pain I have caused them, and it is ripping my insides apart. If they even remotely feel the way I think they feel then what the fuck am I? What have I become? I should have learned from the mistakes of my parents, and not followed in their footsteps, but somehow here I am. I try so hard to change these things, and I may be straight for a few days, or a few weeks, but then slip back into my old self. I hate my old self. I find it very hard to think of anything positive to say about my true self. I find it inconceivable my children love my true self. This actuality makes me cry in my office.

“My motto was always to keep swinging. Whether I was in a slump or feeling badly or having trouble off the field, the only thing to do was keep swinging.”
Hank Aaron

Henry Louis “Hank” Aaron: (born February 5, 1934 in Mobile, Alabama) is a retired Hall of Fame baseball player whose Major League Baseball (MLB) career spanned the years 1954 through 1976. Aaron is widely considered one of the greatest baseball players of all time.

Sports figures have given us many memorable motivational quotes throughout history. These quotes not only give us motivation to keep trying on the field, but off it as well. An athlete may give us a quote that only pertains to on the field perspective, but we can always incorporate it into our personal lives. The lessons we learn about ourselves through participation in competitive sports reflects in our personal and professional lives long after we hang up the cleats.

In baseball if you are able to achieve a .350 batting average you just had an All Star season, you would be praised by the fans, as well as by your peers. If you are able to finish your career with a lifetime batting average of .350 or greater; you would have written your own ticket to the Hall of Fame. If we stop to think about this success to failure ratio, a Major League Baseball All Star only succeeds 35% of the time! I do not know many companies who would keep an employee who failed 65% of the time.

I use the batting average analogy with my children who participate in sports. They will get down if they have a bad at bat, fumble, or just an overall bad game. This success to failure ratio in sports will put a smile on their faces, knowing those they look up to also have bad games. They are motivated for their next at bat, next down, or their next game. I think this and the analogy of practice makes perfect have given my kids valuable lessons on how to succeed in sports and in life.

Sometimes failures can become our greatest lessons. In life we will make many mistakes. We should look at mistakes as learning opportunities. These lessons shape us into who we are through trial and error; success and failures. We learn what works and what doesn’t, and hopefully refrain from what doesn’t; sometimes that can be a mistake all on its own. The mistakes we make today will become tomorrow’s good choices. Imagine a world where everyone was perfect 100% of the time. In my vision this world seems dull, and not very much fun. The reason we cherish and remember successes so much is because of the lessons and stories behind them. Trying to accomplish a task or fulfilling a dream will result in many failures before you are successful. This builds character and teaches us about perseverance. Actress Julie Andrews (The Sound of Music) said it best.

“Perseverance is failing 19 times and succeeding the 20th

The nice thing about living creatures is we are resilient. If a lioness gave up every time she failed to make a kill; her pride would starve. If we were to give up every time we experienced failure in our personal and professional life we would cease to advance and grow. We are similar to our idols in professional sports; we will be judged on our successes and failures. In order for us to reach the Hall of Fame in life we need to keep swinging.

Satan’s Manipulation Tactics

Satan is up to her old manipulative and diabolical tricks again. My daughter had a visit with her last weekend. She is using manipulation tactics to try and get our daughter to see her husband Fuck Face. Satan is using my daughters’ sisters as the tool to achieve this. She has been chipping away at her for the past ten months, saying she can only see her sisters is if she agrees to see Fuck Face with them. She tells her she cannot see them because Fuck Face believes she will bad mouth him in front of them. The only way she can see them is if he is there to monitor. It has been a year and seven months since she has seen them.

My daughter was severely traumatized by this man; he verbally and emotionally abused her while she was living with them over two years ago. He would mistreat her anytime her mom was not around. When she would complain Fuck Face would say she was lying and she would get punished for saying something. The punishments they gave her were severe. They would confine her to her room for a month at a time. She was not able to leave her room for any reason. Meals were served to her on a tray, and she was not even able to bring the plates down; somebody picked them up from her room. There were other punishments, but this was the major punishment which really got under my skin.

There was another time Fuck Face was throwing bottle caps at her while she was doing the dishes. She asked him to stop and he just laughed away and kept doing it, then laid into her because she started to cry. He would find any reason to punish and aggressively attack her. As an example; my daughter was walking up the stairs, and as she was walking up she woke up her mom. She was punished to her room punishment, and had to clean the entire house. In fact I do not think there was a week that went by where she was not on house cleanup.

While she was living with them, she complained all the time he was mistreating her. When I would confront them about this they would call her a liar. He would tell me all these untrue horrible things she said about me. When I told him these things were untrue he said “see see she is a compulsive liar.” They would tell me the only reason she is saying this is because she wanted to live with me. I figured this would have stoped once she moved in with me. I feel like shit for ever doubting what she was telling me.

He must have enjoyed the mental mind fuck he was doing to her, because he couldn’t even stop after she moved in with me. I started to believe everything she was telling me when she still complained of mistreatment on her every other weekend visits,. The final occurrence in March of 09 was the straw that broke the camels back. She came home very upset saying Fuck Face called her a sin child, and unlike her sisters who were born into love, and that is why they are better than her. He told her “you wouldn’t want to have a kid like you would you?” I confronted them; telling them this behavior stops now! I demanded Fuck Face no longer be left along with my daughter, because this is when these things are happening. Satan said that is fine, she was no longer welcomed over there. She has not been back since.

In November Fuck Face sent me a text asking to speak with her (after he found out he may have to pay child support.) When I told her this she started to cry and shiver. She said if she says no he will come and get her, because he knows when she is home alone. She made me promise her I would protect her from him. I have lived up to this promise until now. How do I combat what Satan is doing? I knew eventually if she kept hanging this carrot of seeing her sisters in front of her she would finally break down and agree to see him. My daughter stayed strong and would not agree to this. She would even ask why she can’t just see her sisters without Fuck Face. Her mom would just say “you just can’t.” Yesterday she finally caved in.

I am at a loss for what to do. I cannot control Satan’s tactics; even if I confronted her about this she would just tell me to fuck off. She does not want to see him but says there is no other way she can see her sisters. Should I not allow her to go with if Fuck Face is there? Her therapist wrote a letter to the courts saying it is not in her best interest to see him. The Judge said she should also not see him, until Satan and my daughter go though intense therapy together. I know what there agenda is to get to the point where they do not have to pay child support. I mean c’mon her mom didn’t want to see her until she was threatened with the realization she was going to have to pay child support. I just need to know what the best thing to do is.

On Friday I ordered my sample copy of “Dylan Thomas: Finds His Courage.” I should receive the copy in about a week or two. This book is the first installment in a series of children’s books I am writing. It has taken some time to finally get this thing together and ready to be published. My illustrator and I have learned some valuable lessons during this process. I hope these learning tools will aid us in our future installments. The main thing we learned was having the book edited prior to starting the illustration phase, and we have decided each book will have its own separate illustration style. This will be nice because we can keep things fresh.

If everything looks good this book should be available for sale end of September or early October. I really hope everything turns out on paper as well as it shows on the computer. I am worried the quality will be less than perfect, and the illustrations rely heavily on bright eye popping illustrations. If the quality does not come out we may need to look for another printing company which will only further delay its release. 

This series of books is based around my son Dylan. I chose to use his middle name Thomas because Dylan Thomas is the name of one of my favorite poets. Since the series will always be written in rhyming poetry I feel the name is perfect. The stories will always star my son, but each one of my kids will be in the story as well; in fact every character and location in these books will be based off people and locations I know. We will be publishing one more book “Dylan Thomas: Bed Time Songs,” which I am currently writing. Once this one is published I will begin to shop these books off to literary agents in hopes of getting published by one of the larger publishing houses. I understand I have a much better chance of achieving my dream of becoming a full-time author with this series as opposed to my poetry and blog.

I hope to get the support of my readers so I can show agents solid sales numbers. I will let everyone know the day it is released.

In many marriages where one of the spouses has a mental illness much of the burden is transferred to the “normal” partner. My marriage is no different. My wife has taken care of me for eleven years, and without her guidance I wonder where my life would have turned out. I am grateful to have such a wonderful wife and mother to my children. She has stuck with me through my ups and downs. I think she deals with more shit than most wives out there and 95% of the time she does it with love, compassion, and sometimes understanding. I just found out she got a promotion today, and feel I should tell the world how proud I am of her.

I am in amazement how she has grown and prospered at her current job. Her time there is by far the longest stint at a job; she is celebrating five years of employment. Since the start of our relationship she has grown leaps and bounds in employment responsibility. I have had troubles holding down a job in the past, I am currently entering my third year at this job and if I can make it another year then I would have beat my record; so five years is such a great accomplishment. Her progress and worth to her company is invaluable. I admire her endless knowledge and dedication to her employer. Now that she has been promoted she will be in her first managerial position, which is so great.

Her skills as a mother are unmatched. The way she stays on top and in tuned with our children is simply unbelievable. I have no clue how she can balance everything and manage to be like a hawk with the kids. She has instilled such good morals in our oldest son Austin; he is truly turning into such a wonderful man. I have never known a kid, or adult for that manner who is so Zen. He reminds me of a Taoist Sage without even knowing anything about Taoism. I sometimes wonder if Rambling is really my wife and son combined. He would not be the man he is becoming without the aide and guidance of my wife. We have our work cut out for us on our two younger children. If she is able to mold them into what our oldest son is I would say she should win mother of the decade!

My wife is the most selfless person I have ever known. She always puts the needs of the family first. In a weeks time she may take five hours for herself no matter how hard I try to get her to just slow down and relax. She has always been the hand lifting me from my darkness; even if I refuse to see her hand. I just want her to know how much I appreciate her, and how lucky I am to have her in my life. You and our children are the single most wonderful things to happen in my life.

I love you.