On time and other things

A cold hard fact is that time waits for no one. It continually ticks away. Why do I remind you of this? Rarely are the most important things in our life the most urgent. Some would say that things like their taxes and bills are the most important things in their life. I beg to say they aren’t. Even that task you need to get done isn’t that important.

How do you know what is important? Most, you won’t know until several years after it occured. In some, you will know immediately. For me, the most important things are the time I spend with others. Sometimes it is with my work as a photographers, sometimes it is simply being there with my daughter and her son, and sometimes it is just that casual stranger that I talk with that was on the street. It could be spending time with a friend to help them out or just celebrating some time with them. Another moment is being there and answering messages from people who I value in my life. Why are these moments important to me? Simply put, we don’t know what tomorrow will bring. While it is very unlikely, that proverbial red bus could hit any one of us.

Savour the important things in your life. Spend that little bit of extra time. Send that message or time with whomever it is in your life. Write the message – be it an e-mail or handwritten letter. These moments will rarely knock your door down and tell you it is important.

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I’m a…

Something I hear over and over from people is how they view themselves. They usually say, “I’m a …” and add the rest with something derogatory or a colourful metaphor. Why do people do this? There is nothing that irks me more than hearing something like this.

We are our own worst enemy’s when it comes to how we view ourselves. Often, many of us believe that only someone else can make us happy, or that only something missing from our lives will can be filled by something that isn’t there. This can be just about anything. In reality, we are responsible for our own happiness. No one else is going to make us feel better. It comes down to just one person – who we are.

How do we find that happiness? Great question. I found mine by going through the impossible and knowing I made it when several others couldn’t. I had a built in support network, and many brothers who were there to help me when I couldn’t carry my own burden. Unfortunately, not everyone I knew who went through the same thing found this. I wish that they had. Others find it by finding one thing they are really good and earning accolades and recognition. Some find it with the self esteem and confidence from doing certain activities – especially ones that the person thought impossible. And others find it by finding that one person who is right for them, that they can share everything with and who shares everything back. It could even be a child who loves you for you. Some find it in forgiveness – either receiving forgiveness or giving forgiveness. Each person is unique, so I can’t say which will work for you.

A close friend once told me that the thing to do to make your world brighter was to praise others. Find three people and give them some accolades for something they did right. Give that compliment. Let others know how well they did. Over time, that karma comes back to you.

This won’t fix all your problems, but it is a good start in the right direction. You will still have problems, but keep trying new things, and don’t forget to compliment to people what they are doing right.

 

 

Autism Awarness Month

April is Autism Awareness Month. I have seen a few people who have posted to let others know about it, but very little has been seen or heard outside of the autism boards I participate in. I am not sure why this is. Autism Awareness month has been celebrated since 1970 something (don’t remember the exact year). Amazingly, one in eighty-eight is affected by autism.

As someone who lives with an autism spectrum disorder (not sure why they call it this – it isn’t a disorder), please take the time and try to connect to some of the events going on around your community to bring awareness of autism around you. Learn a little bit about what it is like, and some of the issues that many of us face. At the same time, you will learn and meet some wonderful people.

 

 

It Is the Small Things

When you sit back and think about life, it is the small things in life that mean more to us. Many people tell me that money will solve all their problems. To me, money can’t and won’t solve problems. Money gives you more choices, but that money comes at a cost. So I return to the small things that matter… A simple smile, a hug, a sniff of a good wine, enjoying good music with really good friends… as I said, it is the small things. They are also the ones most overlooked.

Savour the moment, and suck the marrow out of the instance. That short time at sunset holding hands, smelling the crisp spring air, gazing into her beautiful eyes… that will be what means most to you. Don’t forget the moment.

How do You Say Goodbye

How do you say goodbye to someone you care about and have been a very close friend? I don’t know  – I don’t want to say it. Life has happened, and we are growing apart in so many ways. Even though I see hints of the person I knew, their flame is slowly fading. New fires are burning, ones that I don’t want to be singed in. We used to talk or message a few times a day. Now, we don’t say anything. When we do talk, it isn’t pleasant and is more about nothing or highly critical. Trust has broken down. I won’t follow my friend where they are going – I can’t. I feel the pain, frustration, and anger when I am around them. I feel I no longer add to their life – instead, I am taking away, as they take away from mine. I want to be there like the friend I have always been, but they don’t want me there.

How do you say goodbye?

 

Two things happened this past week…

Over the past week, I have been grappling with an ending friendship with someone who I care deeply. There are two things that have caused me difficulty. The first was the text message where the friend said I was ruining her life and someone elses we know. Unfortunately, I don’t know what either of them are talking about. It put me in a tail spin. Then, to also have to deal with this friend’s first loss of a family pet, and watching her sorrow over a pet that has been there most of her life. It has been very gut wrenching to watch this friend grieve for her pet, and not be able to do anything.

I spent a day evaluating what was going on, and have accepted that the friendship was over when she sent me her first text message. I am sorry she choose that way to say this, but in the message, it was clear that she wouldn’t trust anything I would say — her mind was made up. This other person said I was ruining their life. Whether true or not, it was immaterial. As far as she was concerned, this was her decision. In the day afterward, there is only one thing I could say, and I know she wouldn’t understand what it really meant. One thing that I never say is “good bye”. Why? It is so permanent and final. This was from the first time I lost a friend to death, and only those in death or those who I never expect to ever see again is when I say “good bye”. In all other times, I say “Until later…” or “I will see you… ” and the time or place I will see them again. I also say “good bye” to those people who I care about in their caskets at their funerals. So, by saying good bye, I am saying a lot.  Unfortunately, like I said, very few people understand this meaning, even those who are close to me. My wife and daughter are very keenly aware of this meaning, and I think they are the only two who really understand it when I say “good bye”.

As for the friend, she chose to stand by someone else who says I am damaging their life, and continue to do so. In reality, after trying to figure out where this is coming from, I have figured out that this is one or a few things. The first being that this other person gets to play the pitty act, and bolsters their position with it. If I am hurting them, I am being mean and selfish, right? Unfortunately, I am not being mean and I have avoided that other individual for almost a year. If anyone associates with them, I work to separate myself from them. How could separating myself from their activities be hurting them? It shouldn’t. I am no one special or important in this world. I also get the feeling that it is a way that this other person thinks they might try to control me. If they hurt someone who I care about, then I will fold and change my ways to keep them from being hurt. My view point is that anyone who plays this type of game is a terrorist, and I won’t negotiate with terrorists. If anyone ever does this to me, they should consider me dead and lost, because I never want them to cave into someone’s demands like this. Unfortunately, too many people do cave in, and it does establish some power and control to that unscrupulous individual. The last thing this does is allow the friend to do what they want – her sense of obligation would allow that other friend to take out his anger with me on her, and she would willingly accept it and feel obligated to accept it.

In trying to find out what is going on, I have found out that the other person has had several set backs in their career. So called rejections when there had been acceptance in the past. Add to this that the persons own choices and actions have been influencing others. I have even been told that the person has been spreading what he says I have did (while telling others I did it). This is in addition to slams to my character, and don’t really care because I know time will bear me out because what that person is saying is contrary to who I am. And, to make matters worse, I don’t care what that other person thinks.

What kind of conclusions do I have? I have to sever my friendship and go on with life. Not an easy thing to do. I won’t let someone else who I don’t care about to control me or my life. There are too many other things to be focused than this.

In time, the emptiness that this action creates will be filled.

Two years later…

Earlier this week, my wife and I visited our God child’s grave. She passed away two years ago in a tragic accident in front of the whole family. I wanted to write a little about her here. She was a very special child.

Her life began with both a mother and father who really didn’t want her. Her mother was a drug user and drank a lot during the pregnancy. Her mother was on several drugs to control various mental and psychological health issues. Her father was also a drug user, but he ended up spending most of his time in jail during the pregnancy. Needless to say, she was born early with many heath and mental problems. One of her grandmothers noticed how she was being treated and that she needed a better place and more consistent life style (she was autistic). After being awarded custody of her, she grew and became a more controlled and loving person. She was starting to enjoy life. She was funny, and a trouble maker. It struck me odd that he would always fall back into old ways and be panicked when her mom showed up (irregularly and unpredictably, at that). She loved to go fishing and play with the rod and drag it until a blue gill or other pan fish bit at her hook. Given all the problems she had, she was a trooper who loved life (except when her mom was around).

Lily was a wonderful person and someone who loved life. I miss her.