For awhile on Facebook there was this thing going around where people were putting X number of previously unknown things about themselves. I thought a little about this and figured I would do the same. Be prepared, some of these may surprise you if you know me at all.
- I have been fired from three of my jobs over the years. The first time was actually my very first job as a flyer delivery kid. Second time was from School District 2 where I was a complete and total ass and kind of deserved being canned. Last time was in 2006 when I was let go from a teaching job for violation of one of the school’s policies. I disagreed with their point of view, and could have fought it, but I really had begun to hate working there anyway so part of me was glad to be done. It was scary but I ultimately ended up going to work at Whitehill and have been there ever since. More proof of the fact that everything happens for a reason.
- On December 15, 2002, I swallowed an entire bottle of pills in a lame attempt to kill myself. My first marriage had fallen apart earlier that year and I was trying to deal with seeing her happier with someone else than she ever was with me. I didn’t want to die, but I didn’t want to have to feel the emotional agony I was experiencing at the time, and I just wanted it to all go away. I knew that if I talked to anyone about what I was feeling, they would just tell me that “it will get better”. I didn’t want to have to wait for it to be better. I wanted my pain to stop now. I spent a day or so in the hospital being evaluated but came out fine as far as my physical health. My mental health took a lot longer to heal. It was because of this incident I realized I had to make very hard decisions about how to move forward in my life. The first four months of 2003 were brutally hard for me to go through but they were necessary. By fall of that year I was going out with Tamara and my life was completely different.
- An episode of How I Met Your Mother showed me the most beautiful way to describe how insane a person can be when they are truly in love with someone. At one time in my life, I loved someone so much that it didn’t matter whether or not I was ever going to be with them. I just needed them to be happy. Despite how many times they hurt me over and over again (throughout the course of about 11 years by my best estimate), I still kept coming back. When I finally did walk away, it was only a short time period later when I got together with Tamara. In retrospect, I’ve come to realize that I had to go through what I did in the past in order to really be able to walk away from it, and be ready for the life I would have with Tamara.
- I talk to myself a lot. I’ll sometimes go for long drives and “think out loud”. I find it a very therapeutic way to “get things out” when I need to think about things that are hard to talk to other people about. There are times where I will rehearse a conversation I know I have to have that I’m not looking forward to because I feel I need to be able to say things right to someone the first time I say it. I don’t think I’m crazy. I just think that I’m the type of person that needs to get things out vocally regardless of whether or not someone else is actually there.
- Many of my friends know I don’t drink alcohol. You may not know that this originally from the fact that as a kid my grandfather was a serious alcoholic and so was my grandmother. She died later on from complications arisen from her excessive drinking. My mother once told my grandfather that if he didn’t stop drinking he’d never be allowed to see me again. He eventually did give it up but all of the alcoholism I saw as a child made me scared of drinking alcohol. This is not why I don’t drink now but it is where it came from.
- As I watched many of my friends succumb to the pressures of alcohol and drugs, I stayed clear. I owe this to my mom for raising me well, but oddly enough, I think some credit goes to Mike Patton and the band Faith No More. With no male “dad” figure to emulate or serve as an idol or someone to look up to, Patton served as mine. During the 90’s when FNM was hugely popular, Patton was known for a lot of antics and insane things he did on stage and even off. But the bigger surprise was the fact he was drug free. His bandmates would often say “the only drug Mike is on is sugar”. I emulated him almost to a disturbing degree. Many friends from that time can recall my many instances of crazy behaviour and “flopping on the floor like a dying fish” in an attempt to emulate Patton’s stage antics. It was this desire to mimic Patton’s craziness without the influence of substances that helped keep me on the straight path. It also provided a hell of a lot of funny memories from my teenage and college years. As an adult, I can look back and realize that I was influenced in a good way from someone in popular culture. Whether or not the things I believed at the time were actually true or not doesn’t really matter. The end result is that it kept me away from a path that ultimately cost some of my friends their life.
- During the spring and part of the summer of 1993, I started to fall in love with Tamara. We were just friends and I had known her for a couple of years and had never thought of her as more than a friend. I woke up one morning and realized that I was starting to fall in love with her. But, the universe had other plans and our friendship drifted apart. In the summer and fall of 2003, ten years later, our friendship reunited and another 10 years later, I’m still with her and cannot imagine my life without her. I knew 20 years ago that she was the person I was meant to be with. I felt it in every fiber of my bone but I also knew that it was never going to happen. It took a whirlwind of life experiences for both of us, to allow us to come together and have the amazing life we have now.
- I do not believe in regrets. I did at one time but I have come to realize that even the worst decisions you make in your life are for a reason. It’s how you choose to handle those bad decisions that matters. If you let the discomfort or pain from the result of a bad decision overcome you, then you are doomed to never let go of it. If you take a deep breath, accept that you made a mistake, and move on, you can learn from that mistake and make your life better as a result of it. I can honestly look back at some of the things I have done in the past and shake my head at them. But I also can see that those things led me in a direction that was ultimately where I am supposed to be.
- In #6, I said that my family’s history with alcohol is not why I don’t drink today. This is still true. Why don’t I drink alcohol as an adult? It’s no more complicated than just “by choice”. As a kid, I didn’t want to be an alcoholic. As a teenager, I wanted to be like Mike Patton. But as an adult, it’s more about choice, and not wanting to go back on what I have been doing for 30 years. I’ve never had a single alcoholic drink. No beer, shots, wine, anything. Nothing. And at the age of 40, to say that I’ve never had a drop of alcohol, it seems somewhat impressive to me. It’s not something many people can say. And honestly, there’s nothing about alcohol that even appears to be appealing to me. Every time I have an urge to maybe have my first drink, something else happens and shows me why I don’t drink alcohol. It usually involves seeing someone who’s had too much and I am reminded that I don’t have to deal with memory loss, staggering around, or being obnoxious because of how much I’ve drank. I can just shake my head, walk away, and know that I’m not waking up with a brutal headache in the morning.
- Although I have been blogging since around 2001, my desire to write predates that. Before blogging, I wrote most of the material for the 14-15 issues of VAJ Magazine I produced. Before that, I was writing Robotech fan-fiction in junior high school. Even now with my blog entries being far less than they were at one time, I am still writing on here, as well as on my geocaching website, Cache Up NB. I even do a lot of writing as part of my job. I write a lot of training manuals and curriculum for the courses I develop. I even wrote a “tech” column for HERE magazine for awhile. Writing is something I love to do and would love to find a way to make some money doing it if I could find more time to do it.
There ya go. A unloaded quite a bit here but it feels kind of good to do so. Wonder how many of these you already knew.