What remains…

I am SO proud of you two!

Josh – It’s the beginning of January 2016 and you recently started a new job as part of the Security team for the Monterey Bay Aquarium.  And, as you always do, you used your confidence, your integrity, and your sense of professionalism, and you immediately gained the respect and trust of those you work with and work for.  Now, after only 2 months, they disparately want you to take on a supervisory role.  When I spoke with you last week, you had a sense of purpose in your voice again that was wonderful to hear.  You are moving forward.  I’m definitely a Proud Dad!

Donday – Unfortunately, you had to deal with the collapse of the marriage of your parents at the same time that you’re trying to put together the beginnings of your own marriage (your wedding in August).  And, as is your nature, you have been loving and fair and compassionate and an absolute joy to be around.  You being “You” around me has made my challenges much-less of a challenge.  Again — I’m definitely a Proud Dad!

2016 is going to be a transformative year for all of us — including your mom.

My Top 3 Goals for this year are (in order of importance):

  1. Be the Best Dad I can be to your two.
  2. Create a new life on solely my own two feet.
  3. Transition my relationship with your mother in as civil and honorable way as I possibly can.  (I can only control my own actions, so that’s what I’m going to focus on.)

I love you both SO Dearly.

Please continue to keep me in-the-loop of your life, and I promise to do the same.

Dad

Taking the first step…

To get the most-asked question out of the way… No – I haven’t recovered from the still-recent shock of losing my marriage.  Comparatively, life has been easier the last couple weeks because – quite candidly – Marlene has been out of the country.  This has allowed me to breathe and simply live life.  I’ve done the common things people do in my situation: I’ve kept busy, I’ve focused on the controllable (i.e.: setting up my bedroom, packing and giving away “stuff”, cleaning/reorganizing the house, etc.).  I’ve also done my best to take over the finances.  That last one has been the most challenging and most rewarding.

And then there’s the common “Lee” thing: I’ve been creating plan upon plan regarding 2016.  What will I do?  What do I want?  Doing my absolute best to physically write-through project plan after project plan in an attempt to crystalize a life on my own.  Although they all make logical sense, none of them (yet) seem real to me.

So, in lieu of a clear-cut future, I’m managing the “Now”.

I’m taking control of my health.  Yes, that means another diet plan.

I’m taking control of my surroundings.  Yes, that means continued “Stuff” reduction at home.

I’ve created a bedroom that is more “Me”.   In fact, I only realized last night that it’s been almost 20 years since I last slept in a room that had all of my clothes in it.  My personal “Stuff” had been relegated to the basement not long after we first moved into the house because Marlene’s “Stuff” was over-abundant and growing rapidly.  For almost 2 decades, the only things of mine that were in “our” bedroom were my pillows and whatever I could fit onto a small night table (portable DVD player, clock, etc.).  Now, EVERYTHING in the room – MY room – is “Me!”  All of my clothes are there (By the way, I’m still getting used to that), I’ve got wall-hangings that are of MY choosing (detailed maps of the Moon and Mars), I have my own TV, I have a small bookcase loaded with Books-to-Read, I have my own comfortable chair to read in, and so on.

With each passing day, I’m getting more and more comfortable in that space.

And… Maybe that’s how it will finally happen.  Maybe becoming comfortable in My Room is eventually going to be the Key to becoming comfortable in My Life.

I’m building new nightly routines: I open the window near my head so that the room’s temperature drops to a comfortably cool level, I find a movie on Prime that I’ve seen many times, I set the TV’s Sleep-Timer to 60 minutes, and I quickly fall asleep.  The first few nights, waking up in that room was uncomfortable and strange; it is steadily becoming less-so.

I try no to allow myself to consider the day when Marlene returns from the Philippines.  I don’t want to think about how her presence will disrupt my forward progress.  I look far-forward to the day when she (hopefully) moves completely out of the house and (even more hopefully) out of the state.

For now… I’m managing “Now”.

That’s the best I can do at this time.