Monday, April 25, 2011

On Getting Older

Sometimes I think my life is pretty boring. I see others having good times with friends, going out, enjoying happy hour and other social events and I wonder why I am not with them.
 
Right now my life consists of work, family and coaching. We really do not have the money nor the time to go to happy hour or go to parties or spend all that much time with friends. Sometimes I blame it on where we live. I have always been somewhat of a home body, most of my social events would occur at my friends houses or at ours. We would have dinner and then hang around and talk about life over some alcohol.
 
So I often wonder what happened. Of course I conclude as I am sure most others do when approaching their 40s that we have all just became older. It is not so much as we do not want to do it, it is more that we have all settled down and had children. Not only do we have little people that need lots of sleep, we seem to need more sleep as well.
 
Occassionally we have parties, oyster roasts, cook outs, company get togethers, but they all seem to end before eleven. The conversations all focus on children and sometimes on work. All this because we are older. Its not a bad thing, since I would not trade anything for less time with my family. It just is.
 
The days that I look at the younger, childless people and think that I wish I could go back to those days are the same days that I tuck in my little red head at night and think there is nothing else like it.
 
I remind myself that my life is not mine exclusively anymore that I must share my time with my family and most importantly my daughter. Sure I get time to myself as we all do. But the time that we have together is never my time anymore.

That being said, last week was spring break and I took some time off to spend with my daughter. We spent one day not worrying about money or work or school and played miniature golf, rode the go karts, and played video games and had a blast doing it. I dont mind getting older, as long as I can have days like that.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Ass - ume the position (HNT)

I am an ass man as it came up in an email conversation that I had with a fellow blogger. She is an ass woman so per her request I am posting this picture. I have a few others that I took and am thinking about doing a little theme, basically naked yoga poses. But they will probably have to wait until next week.

Hope you like the picture and Happy HNT!

As always visit Os to see who else is participating.

Reasoning

While many of you see that I am not as active on the blog as I have been in the past, I will attempt to explain what is going on.
 
Of course part of the reason is that I am in the middle of my sports season, which I am a coach for a varsity sports program. The season lasts from January through the middle of May. I basically spend most of my time either at practice or games during this period.
 
But mainly the reason behind my absense is that I have found it difficult to post when I have the time to post. I work for the government. In a job that requires firewalls, restricted sites, restricted access to computer applications, therefore I have a very limited time that I can post. Before I was able to access the network from my computer and would post and comment. Now I am restricted on what I can view and comment on.
 
I have found a way to post while I am at work, but do not have a way to comment. My season is winding down too so I hope to have more time in the evenings to spend porusing the sites that I frequented prior to this change.
 
All I can say is bare with me, I have not disappeared and am starting to come back gradually. I have a bunch of stories that I have yet to post and will be getting back into the swing for the HNT pictures.
 
Hope you are all having a good Wednesday!
 
Jack

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Once Again...

It seems in each of the past three years I have had to deal with some major health concerns involving cancer. The first situation was my mom dying of endometrial cancer. The second was my good friend dying from a brain tumor and now about a year and three months after my friends death I have to deal with another close friend and his fight.
 
Let me first say, I am optimistic about this friend. He is a fighter, he is young and he has a strong family and group of friends. He also has been diagnosed with a form of cancer that seems to be very treatable, Hodgkin's Lymphoma.
 
About a week ago, he called me up to tell me the news. I could hear in his voice that he was nervous and that he still had a lot of tests to confirm what the doctors first thought. A few days later his fears were confirmed when they told him that he had a growth the size of a softball near his heart and that he most likely had Hodgkin's Lymphoma.

The prognosis for HL is very good. The survival rate is very high and most patients survive for 25 years or more, what makes his situation a little worse is the location of the growth.
 
He started treatment this past weekend. It will be twelve weeks of chemo and another four to six weeks of radiation treatment. I believe it is called a dual modality treatment.
 
My friend is 23, just recently married and has not even moved into the house he just bought with his new wife. He started a new job this year and was excited about the prospects. All of that is put on hold now until he gets his life back.
 
We had a meeting last night for our club sports program, which he was involved with and his dad is the president. We talked about our end of the season party and the talk came back to our friend and how to honor him. His dad was a little reluctant to accept our support, he told us its hard for him to accept charity. I told him, in this situation you are just going to have to accept it. Our friend, his son, has been a mentor to all the kids for years and he and his family deserve the recognition.
 
As I get older, I realize that more people that I know will be touched by cancer. My assistant coach, who is nineteen, said this is the first person he has known to have a serious illness. A few years ago, I may have said the same thing, but that is not the case now. Three people in three years, that is not a very good statistic that I like to talk about.
 
So please take some time and think about someone who has been touched by cancer and send some good thoughts my friends way.

Thanks,
 
Jack

Monday, April 11, 2011

Too Young To Understand

"Megan has a fireman's pole in her living room," my daughter said at the dinner table last night. "It is really fun to play on."
 
"You should see what Heather can do on it," she added. "She can run up to it, climb to the top, lock her legs around it and swing around."
 
My wife and I looked at each other and smiled.
 
"She called it a dancing pole," my wife said but we both laughed at that. Henry, her husband, installed it a few weeks ago but my daughter has not been over to her house since.
 
We both knew that the mom worked at a strip club because my daughters karate teacher is a bouncer at the club and she mentioned she knew him from work. Mind you I would say gentlemen's club but this place is pretty seedy and definitely in a very seedy part of town.
 
I was under the impression, originally though, that the mom was an administrative person in the club, either manager or some other office staff because she works a lot of daytime shifts. She was probably a dancer at one point but she is late-thirties and has an eighteen year old daughter as well as a eleven year old son and a nine year old daughter who is my daughters friend.
 
Of course she could still dance, giving the location of the club it is not the highest caliber and she is an attractive woman.
 
Even though I am pretty open when it comes to sex, having my eight year old daughter exposed to that at this point makes me cringe a little.
 
She has already been exposed to the conversations about sex from some of the 5th graders she hangs out with. Which makes me cringe even more. When I was that age we were not even remotely exposed to that until middle school, definitely not elementary school. I know times have changed but I am not ready for her to start that path.
 
My wife and I have talked about sex with her, how to protect her in situations and to tell us if anything bad happens to her. That is extremely important at this stage of her life, especially since she is a beautiful little red head. We have not had the conversation yet, mostly talking about good touching/bad touching.
 
"Should we still let her play with Megan at her house," I asked my wife after dinner.
 
She sort of laughed it off but we both had our reservations. Just like with sex we want her to understand her body and that she has the ability to control it. She can also make decisions for herself but she has to understand the consequences, at 8 she does not know what those are or how her life would be different based on her decisions.
 
At 8 she barely understands that she can not just eat candy for lunch and dinner.
 
Having her refer to the stripper's pole as a fireman's pole, I know the mom did not explain to her what it really was for. I do know the mom called it a dancing pole and my daughter watched her dance around it, clothed of course. I also know that the news has been reporting on several fitness clubs that are using pole dancing classes to get in shape so maybe we can explain how it is used without revealing the other things that may be associated with it.
 
All I can do is empower my daughter to make the right choices in life and hope that she will when the time comes for those decisions to be made. I know now though she is still too young to understand.