Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Scattered Thoughts

Scattered thoughts - IMG_7945 ed

Well, first of all, I have exchanged some really nice emails with the program manager at the Michael's retirement office. He is really coming through for me. I do wish though that he would stop referring to Michael as "Mr. Lowrie" in his emails to me. I wish he was just refer to Michael as my husband. Maybe I'm being overly sensitive about this, but after all I have been through with this, I keep feeling like everything is some type of homophobic backlash.

To top off my quite stressful week, there was an incident Monday where I was locked out of the laundry room next door. It is where my landlord had told me I had access to. It appears that there has been an ongoing turf war between the other condo owners in this home owners association, and I don't think the owner of this house has been completely honest with me, or cooperative with them. The end result was that they changed the locks, in effect, to lock me out.

Due to this situation, there has been so much tension between me and the neighbors since I moved in. None of us had actually met, but were somehow put in an adversarial position. Well, I ended up going next door to address this once and for all. What ended up was a nice conversation between me and the residents next door, and I now feel that they were not the problem. The problem was the people who own this house. Since then I have had a very nice conversation with one of the neighbors, who has a new baby. I was also able to help her out, as she was trying to install a new baby gate that just didn't work for their front door. I happened to have one, and gave it to her. Suddenly I'm feeling much more at ease when outside my house, or over at their building where my car is parked.

You know, it's a wonder that I haven't had a nervous breakdown with all of this. You know, when I think about this whole move, nothing has actually gone the way I planned. I didn't get the job I wanted, the housing situation has been a nightmare, and I am having to deal with this death benefit issue from long distance. To top it off I have been having some fairly serious problems with my 16 year old. My hair is already salt and pepper, but should be completely white by now.

When I was in therapy I had told my therapist that I didn't believe that I was meant to be happy. By all accounts, the big kahuna in the sky appeared to have it out for me. Any time that I think things are going my way, they suddenly do an about face, and in the end I am fucked. Sorry, I really should watch my language. For a sweet guy I have quite a foul mouth.

Anyway there was one shining moment today. The boys and I were supposed to go to the beach today, but they both changed their mind and just wanted to stay at home. I cooked a really nice dinner and then announced that we were going on a forced outing. They both looked at me like I was crazy. "Dad, can't we just stay home?" Absolutely not. We are going out for milk shakes whether you like it or not. I surprised them by taking Michael's convertible out of the garage. We put the top down, and I went speeding down the Pacific Coast Highway. I drove to the furthest McDonald's I could find. The boys thought I had lost my mind, but were laughing all the way. Eventually I slowed down, and drove through some quiet neighborhood. Suddenly the boys started talking, rather than fighting, and we had a really nice time. A wonderful evening outing, all for the low price to three milk shakes.

Here's something funny that happened last night. I was at my yoga class, waiting for the earlier class to end. The instructor and I were making small talk while waiting. At one point he asked what I had planned tomorrow. I said I was going to take my boys to the beach. He then asked what beach, to which I replied "Ocean Beach." His response was, "What kind of dogs do you have?" I laughed out loud (LOL?). I then explained that my "boys" were actually boys. The yoga teacher is gay, as is most of the guys at my men's yoga class. I forget that I'm a bit of an anomaly. And to cut him some slack, Ocean Beach is the only beach that allows dogs, so I can see why he thought of dogs when I said my boys. To be quite honest, I sometimes think of dogs when I think of my boys as well. One would be a bull dog, the other a shaggy runt. Oh, I say this lovingly!

I wish I had something brilliant to say tonight, but I'm now feeling a bit brain dead. I have been writing non stop for the past 24 hours. Last night a wrote an extra post which will be posted sometime soon on the Widows Voice blog, where I will be doing some more guest writing. I am also working on a couple of other projects, one being a bit of my life story. At this point I have two versions, with very different starting points, as I can't seem to decide what type of framework I want to use to tell my story. I worry that when I do find a job that I will put these projects aside and never finish them. Too bad I'm not independently wealthy. I could get a lot done with a lot of money.


  1. I'll be watching for the piece you've written for Widows Voice, Dan.

    Re: life and things going right (or all wrong). My life has seemed very weird and crazy much of the time since Don died. So many stupid and difficult things have happened. I sometimes wonder if, somewhere, there is someone stabbing pins into a voodoo doll of me. (-:

  2. Dan, it's so important that you feel comfortable in your own home and I have no doubt that your neighbours are going to love you now that they have met you. I know I did :-)

    I too wish that that man would call Michael your husband because that is who he is. He wouldn't say Mr Mayhew to me would he? Silly man, at least he is being helpful now and as you say, coming through for you. Hopefully another thing that will be sorted for you soon. Paperwork is so damn stressful. Especially when you are widowed, it seems even more stressful.

    As soon as I read about your trip to McDonalds (which I call America's "tits in the sky" - think about it, yes I am rude sometimes ;-) I could hear "Ocean Drive" in my head. It's a great song, I used to sing it to Cliff and it is associated with happy times, so I am so glad that I can now also associate it with you.

    Love you, Boo xxx

  3. boo! That's awesome. I told matt that our ceiling light fixture looked like a breast and nipple. He looked up, said "I never thought of that at all. Now I won't be able to not see it." Ah, so now McD. will always be "tits in the sky." Thank you. Any reason to laugh.

    Dan - "for a sweet guy I have quite a foul mouth." I never really swore before this. M and my stepson knew if I said even the mildest swear I was really stressed out. Ah, but the vile invectives spewing from me these days. They used to feel strange coming from me, now, unfortunately, they do not.

    And, I wonder if he is saying Mr. Lowrie as a respectful title. Some people feel it's disrespectful to address someone by the relationship you have, and maybe, given what you have been put through, he is trying to be as respectful as humanly possible. Ain't necessarily so, but maybe.


  4. Hi Dan,

    I'm feeling a little brain dead myself and I have nothing interesting to say, except that I loved this post. And ditto to everything Boo said (except the "tits in the sky" - I've never hear McD's referred to in that way but now everytime I see the golden arches I'll think of Boo and the tits in the sky :) )

    I can see you and your boys cruising in Michael's convertible along the ocean. Wonderful image. And a great reminder that sometimes just getting our kids out of the routine for a short while can create lovely moments.

    Hugs and love to you,

  5. Glad you guys had a fun time. My kids are back from having spent the summer with their Dad & teenage energy can be very taxing. I remember when they were wee little & I couldn't wait for them to talk. Now they say things & I think back to the "idyllic times" where what I got was a drooly smile. :-)