For Better, or Worse.
Words we married folk know well. The moment when everything changes, and from that point forward nothing will be the same. We don’t always (if ever) think too deeply about it or what it could mean. Till it happens. Before I met my wife I was a loner, a drifter, having spent most of my life searching for something but not knowing what. As a DJ for almost 20 years I did a lot of travelling, did a lot of partying, met a lot of women, and did a lot of “questionable” things. But I was never satisfied and so I kept looking, moving, searching for something different. I can’t tell you how many times I have moved, and it would take too much energy to try to figure out how many places I have lived. But still I was never home, never felt like this or there was where I belonged.
There are days when I feel like I’m on top of the world, like there is nothing that could happen to make anything any better. Then there are days I think things I never thought I would. There are times when I couldn’t imagine being any happier, like while holding one of my incredible daughters, or snuggling with my wife watching a movie listening to the rain on the roof. And there are times I regret waking up in the morning. Is that life? Is that what we are doing, just coping with the bad in hopes that some good comes along to make it worthwhile. The news is incredibly distressing, you can’t turn on the TV without hearing about another child missing, or one has been found murdered. Some Country is fighting with another and that has happened my entire life, no change there. So what is it. What drives us, what is the point.
Tell someone 30 years ago that we’ll be flying back and forth to a space station, cooking frozen dinners in 5 minutes AND without a stove, or that you have a phone smaller than a cigarette case that you can walk down the street while talking even, and they will think you are crazy. Try and explain the Internet or Xbox 360 to them, and you get the picture. But one thing, I believe, has stayed the same. The world has changed a great deal since then, things are done very differently. Cars, construction, travel, communication, even music, has changed so much that it hardly resembles the past in many ways. Is that what someone meant that change, is inevitable. But is it better. Are we evolving, or just getting older.
We have managed to create and develop new, efficient, and disturbing ways of killing each other. Smart bombs, cruise missiles, nuclear submarines, and remote control. Wiping out an entire city with the push of a button from half a world a way, in the blink of an eye. I read about a man who got 10 years for selling pot to someone, then later that night on the news heard the reporter say a child rapist had received a 4 yr sentence in prison. I’ve watched a mother lie about her child being missing, leading others on a wild goose chase, knowing full well what had happened, that she was no longer alive. Now trying to “get off” on a technicality. Makes me want to vomit.
I used to be a romantic guy, flowers, dancing, dinner. Now I just can’t wait to get my heating pad. I used to toss a football around, play street hockey with my boys, yet I’ve never given my baby girls a horsey ride. Once upon a time ice skating was fun, as was hockey, baseball, or hell even Frisbee. All a thing of the past for me.
But I digress, after my stint as a DJ that consumed most of my younger years was over….Wait..The reason it was over is because it was not working. Remember the saying “looking for love in all the wrong places”? Well it’s true. And trust me, I looked in ALL the wrong places. One morning, and I don’t know why, I just decided to quit. And I moved again, back to Ottawa. I guess I picked Ottawa because I had lived here before, and liked the city. Despite the trouble across the river. So here I was, back in town with no job, no place, and no idea what I was going to do. And wondering why the hell I did what I just did. It wasn’t going to be clear to me for a while, but I discovered the reason. In my quest to radically change the direction of my life I was attending college to learn about computers, And occasionally stopping by at the local bar for a beer. This is where I met my wife.
It could drive a person crazy trying to figure out all the ifs and maybes and different things that could have happened, that would have created a different future for me. I f I had stayed a DJ in all likely hood I would never have injured my back, probably met some girl somewhere and maybe would have been okay. If. Maybe. Perhaps. But it would not have been my wife. You cannot take the good without expecting a price for it. Everything has a price. It is not always money, or even something tangible, but it’s always something. SO I’ve tried to figure out why I am suffering. Why am I in such pain, it cannot be the price of happiness because there are times when…well…lets just say I’d get my ass kicked for thinking it. And you can’t be happy if you’re dead right? So why then, why do I wake every morning in pain. Why do I go to sleep every night in pain. Why do I try to live my life in the periods between agony, and pain?
I’ll tell you why, I figured it out. It’s because there must be something more. There must be something more in store for me. Now I don’t know if you believe in fate or not, but well I have started leaning in that direction. There has to be a reason, because if there isn’t then there’s not much point in continuing. Did my injury prevent me from doing something that would have caused something worse? Did it stop me from going in a direction that I would regret later? I guess I will never know what “might” have happened if things had happened differently. That is the mystery of life I suppose.
Can you imagine raising 3 teenagers, one of them disabled, and a newborn, while your spouse is unable to help in basically any way? In fact having to take care of your spouse on TOP of the children, and trying to work as well so everyone can eat, have a place to live, and have clothes on their back. Doing all of that because some company manager decided it was cheaper not to give proper protection for its workers. The effect of that decision has lasted over 6 years now, and so has the strain on everyone involved. It has not only affected my life, but the life of my wife, and that of our children. It has been very tough, and everyday, every single day, is like the last. With no relief in sight. I have learned a lot about my self, my wife, our marriage, and our family in the past 6 years. We are very strong, very committed, and fed up.
At this point I have no idea what is going to happen next, as everything that is tried to control or diminish the pain is not working, at least not completely, it cannot go on this way indefinitely so something is going to have to change. What change that is going to be remains a mystery for now but I’m sure will be known soon. One thing is certain. My love for my wife and my children is as strong as ever, and confidence in our ability to handle what life throws at us strong. Without my wife I could not have made it this far and loathe the idea of ever finding out what that might be like. I know in my heart that I don’t have to worry about that. And that in itself is a blessing, there is something to be thankful for, though I’m quite certain when she said “for better or worse” this is not what she had in mind.