Found an email this week from the end of March–which was done with specific plans in mind. Less than four months later, I guess plans change. Ah well–roll with it I suppose.
I can share this as a parent (at least I think I can).
I would go through walls for my kids. Nothing would stop me if there was something I thought I could do for them. Now my kids are on the young side–but I don’t think I am alone in that.
On the extreme other end, is my wife’s mother. Now granted its not a 1:1 comparison, two sub-teens versus a child with two kids of her own–but still…
The wife is in end-stage with a brain tumor and “living” in hospice care. What is her mother doing? Going to retreat to upstate NY for the rest of the summer without a car. Easily a four hour drive from where her daughter is on her death bed.
I know I couldn’t do it.
A long time ago (I want to say in the 80’s) the clever mind’s of New York’s MTA (Metropolitan Transportation Authority) coined the as slogan “MTA Going Your Way.”
This was a move to boost ridership that had lagged–due to poor maintenance, dangerous subway stations etc. Now for those not in NYC, the MTA runs buses, subways and commuter rails in and around New York City as far north as Westchester and as far east as Nassau County.
Today, not one of their better days. LIRR posted delays of 15 minutes from Jamaica (central Queens into NYC) to NYC’s Penn Station. Now the posted reason for this is an Amtrak switching problem–since Amtrak manages the tunnels under the East River that the LIRR traverses).
Of course, if the LIRR is willing to admit to 15 minute delays–count on 30+. And so it was. Add to that the indignity of changing in Jamaica to one of the LIRR’s 1970’s era cars. Now the LIRR has cut service and shortened trains in the name of saving money–not sure how shorter trains save money, but I will accept it does. So how could they still be running these 40-year old wrecks?
Then came the NYC subway. A stunningly clear announcement that uptown A Trains were delays–and the recommendation was to bounce over to the local C trains. According to the announcement, the next A train was at least 10 minutes away.
So everyone jumped over to the local track–but the next C Train was apparently 15+ minutes away–and the A train came in first. Is it possible they do not know where their trains are? Seems that way to me.
Net it out–my normal 2 hour door to door morning excursion took 3 hours and 22 minutes.
Yeah, MTA Going My Way. There is a solid reason why with ridership at record highs, the Authority is $800,000,000+ in the toilet. This morning, captures it pretty well.
I have subjected myself to pure torture in the name of trying to do the right thing–and well, its just not the easiest thing to do for sure.
I opened my house to grandma, thinking it would be good for her and good for her daughter to spend whatever time is left together.
I knew it would be stressful on the girls and me, but just not how stressful.
So, I am trying to do the right thing–really trying, and still waiting for it to pay off.
For me, when things seem to be spinning out of control I try to grab onto a couple of key things and keep them in order–and hope that sense of order and familiarity will manifest across other things.
Lately, I’ve been in a prolonged period of things spinning out of control (read more about it here)–and what’s been tough for me to manage has been the fact that there is little I can do to control most of that stuff. So, I try to keep control over other things-and try to “breed” that sense of order.
While I do not think I am a control freak by any means, I like some predictability. And then comes that moment when some of what is in order begins to spin too. At first its a little twist–then who knows.
It’s a reminder there is no time we are irreplaceable. Life goes on all around, we are all parts–in with one, out with the other. No one is larger than the sum of the rest of the parts.
It’s a cross-section of life–at home, at work, interpersonal, intra family–we are interchangeable.
So, I have gone to great measures to build in as much structure as I can into the house. I have tried to set up systems, try to stay a day or more ahead. And 90% of the time it works fine.
But the problem with a juggler is 4 items, not a problem, but that fifth? Throws the whole rhythm off. And so it goes here tonight.
What I thought was foolproof got torn apart. We’ll try to get back at it again tomorrow, hopefully a little wiser and slightly more informed about what can go wrong.
Sometimes I think we expect an answer or anticipate an answer and when we don’t get that answer, well obviously the other person would be wrong.
Sometimes things just happen. And while there is no cause there is an effect.
All floating around. Plenty of fish, more than 18 million to go around.
Guess sometimes all that’s needed is the right bait, and a hook I suppose.
I grew up as a sports guy and continue to be a sports guy. So breaking things down by X’s and O’s makes a lot of sense to me.
But X’s and Y’s has always been confusing–and here is a lesson I got last night:
By and large I think I am a guy’s guy–nothing unusual there. The times I need help, I will reach out to friends and family and ask flat out. And then I can gauge the value of my friendship or family relations based on the response.
I discovered last night though that women (and I admit right here I do not know if its all women, some women, most women or a specific woman) will “hint” and the help they need–and then gauge the value of the friendship or family relation based on the person’s ability to discern the need and offer support.
Now here is my problem with this–and maybe I am just not the bright (its OK, I am comfortable with this outcome): It puts the burden of assessing the need and measuring the response on me–and not the person who needs help. And what’s worse, if I can’t help or can’t supply all of the help that the person seeks–I am in the position of having to embarrass myself in saying, “No, I can’t right now.”
So now, I have let someone (presumably if they have hinted they need help close to me) down, I have let myself down because I can’t be there and I am now focused on my own shortcomings while trying to help someone.
Its the X’s and Y’s that will get you.
So lately things go from 0-60 in no time, and I end up angry, frustrated and cursing (sometimes louder than I should).
At this point, daily there is at least one-if not more loads of urine stained items to clean. Sheets, pads, blankets, comforters, clothes–its never ending. And the house is akin to living in a public rest room in Penn Station.
Yet, when I go to help, if its not just the right time, its turned down, rudely. And if we get back to the time when I can help, she is ready and the stars are aligned its too late. I am met with “relax.” Easy to say when you are not the one keeping it all afloat and doing all the laundry I suppose.