Wednesday, December 13, 2006

The Path to Being Happy - My Dad & Star Wars Legos

I've had great evenings the past two days. Tuesday night, Meredith and Alexander went to La Leche League meeting in Denton and I was left to fend for myself. I'm still feeling "off" from my illness a week ago, so I wanted to go get some nice chicken salad and pita bread for dinner. I went to the grocery store near my parent's house and not only was their chicken salad sitting there with a solid film on it but they didn't have a pita in the place.

Feeling sorry for myself and mad at the store, and generally bummed out about work, life and everything else, I went to my parent's house where my Dad was watching TV. My Mom was out for the evening, she keeps herself constantly busy, and I just sat and talked with Dad for a couple of hours. But what made the evening great was a couple of things:

1. We worked out how to hook up his $5 set of TV rabbit ears to his 42" Samsung DLP HDTV and get local HD channels at a touch of his remote. He has had a sour relationship with Charter Cable the past several months. They couldn't get his cablecard to work correctly. Both he and I were tickled that we got his TV to work on both the broadcast air channels and the cable channels he does have.

2. We talked about his hobby of doing small metalwork sculptures. Frogs, lizards, flowers and butterflies are his favorites. I've been telling people for years that it takes an artist to work with metal like he does...especially to take a beaten vehicle and put it back together correctly and have all of the original lines of the car look exactly like they were first constructed. He is an artist, and his current work only shows it to everyone.

These two things Tuesday night did a world of good for me to feel better about myself. I've been questioning lately why I keep finding the negative aspects of my life so self-fulfilling. I'm tired of being the worry guy. I've worked hard the past 16 years to get through college and professional life to complete projects ontime and at my best effort. I have a nice life because of it...but I'm not enjoying it as I could be. I'm constantly in worry that it will come crashing down.

But it won't. And if something bad does happen, I'll get through the crisis like I always do. I'm great when things happen. I'm focused, organized and methodical. I've rushed to car accidents without a thought in Petaluma CA. I don't freak out at a crisis. Its the anticipation of a crisis or problem that kills me. Its a form of stage fright - what IF I screw up? I've been out on a stage and blown a line. I've experienced it. I didn't die and now, 10 years later, who knows or cares?

I've got to have a better life. It's the only way I'll get to feel better.

So after hanging out with Dad for a while, I went to Market Street in Colleyville. Bought a lovely chicken and artichoke salad, a green pea salad, and freshly baked pitas, then went home and watched a great show on TV. Meredith and Alexander came home and we had a nice evening.

Then, last night Meredith made a lovely dinner, Alexander ate it without complaint and as a special bonus, he and I went upstairs to the game room and played with Daddy's Star Wars Legos and built an AT-ST. If he continues to be good, we'll get to build other ships as well.

It was fun. It allowed Meredith the time to finish writing her final for her class she's teaching and get prepped for running her Weight Watchers meeting. The best thing about that I feel good.

I need more days like this.

And I'm going to get them.

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