Point of No Return

Point of No Return by LastGlance

“I wanted to call you to tell you that I’m leaving LA today.  I won’t be coming back.”

He wasn’t leaving me.  I had left him months ago.  But his recent trip back here originally planned for work purposes turned personal and…

“I knew better in February.. but it was already too late. Interesting.” I’d tweeted a few days prior to that day.

None of this was a surprise.  None of it.  Even the bad things that transpired and came into light on that fateful night.  This had been unhealthy.  I had let it continue too long.  We both had.  And now the hurt had to… at least be put on pause.

“My dad cares about the baby.  He hasn’t been the same with me since you told him.  He’s been on my case about things.  He doesn’t like the situation.”

I had liked his parents.  We’d met briefly back in April on this two day excursion where they visited.  They had been very welcoming and had offered to help us a bit.  I didn’t tell them then I was pregnant.  He didn’t want me to.  But it had to come out a bit later.  After a phone call where he cried to me about how much he needed help (this was not the first time I had seen how he’d needed it but it was the first real time he admitted it) after I’d left that night.  I looked them up online and found the information.  He needed the intervention and I didn’t know who else I could turn to.

Since then he made a point to make them seem like they didn’t care about anything and that the whole thing between us/going on/his issues were just… something they’d rather not deal with.  My heart was very broken about it.  In particular after a conversation with his father where… things had gone particularly out of left field from a previous conversation where he not only agreed that his son had needed help but they had essentially given up on him since “he’s done this for 20 years”, he’d “done this before and will likely do it again”, and “had been given help in the past but that hadn’t been enough to change it.”  I thought that his family did not care at all about the baby.  Hearing Bear talk about otherwise was bittersweet.

I essentially heard the words “hopeless cause” and… it really tore my heart out.  I can’t imagine how hard that was for Bear to hear.  I can’t imagine how hard it is daily for him.  I… too wish I had been able to save him but at the end of everything, I couldn’t.

He’d left me a message on my phone apologizing after five missed phone calls the night prior, a suicide threat and 911 calls a few nights prior to that, and an introduction and talks with another woman whom he had not mentioned prior but had a brief “affair” with back in December while we were together and… was currently with again previously unbeknownst that dreadful drunken somber night.

After.

After.

After.

Alas this was the “after” after the “Happily” and “Ever” portion of our relationship.  It was sad and broken beyond repair.  All hope had gone beyond lost.  And months later, I was still obliterated.

Rewind to a week prior-

I got the ultrasound and had found out the sex of the baby. He seemed “back”.  He was eager and happy to be a dad.  He didn’t want me to have an abortion.

“Don’t you dare kill my son.”

It was a complete 180.

But things changed. Just as instantly as that picture had touched him and he’d felt connected, he disconnected again.  And even last week before he left he was finding him again trying to pressure me into getting an abortion.

I nearly considered it and I felt terrible at even the thought.

” I won’t be coming back.  What reason do I have to?  What reason do I have to stay at all?”

I shouldn’t have had to answer that.

It was wrong.

So very very wrong.

He doesn’t see what he did.  He doesn’t acknowledge the cheating.  He doesn’t care about getting mental help or quitting the drinking or “living higher than the poverty line”.  He only cares about himself… and protecting trying to salvage the relationship with the other woman who he had been with for six years prior to arriving in Los Angeles… a woman that… he had taken full advantage of her kindness and… loneliness.

(Another blog.  Another time.)

“I want you to be nice to me and I want to be nice to you. I am scared. I want to put my hand on your belly and feel the boy punch my hand with his little fist.”

I didn’t see him while he was here.  There had been talks about it but nothing had happened.

“Why did you tell me that if you didn’t want to see me?  Why did you tell me all the rest of those things if you didn’t want to work on things and come back?”

“I was drunk.”

“I wanted to call you to tell you that I’m leaving LA today.  I won’t be coming back.” he told me when I called him back after that message.

Here stands the official point of no return.  As of 22 weeks, Planned Parenthood will not perform an abortion on you in the state of California.  Last week was the last official time I could potentially go through with the procedure.  I think about how much has happened from that first message, ages ago when he told me he loved me.  From all the terrible correspondence that has transpired after many bouts with his erratic behaviors.  With my struggles to keep myself as composed as possible while going through everyday.  With…

There is no more returning to that sadness anymore.  That life is gone and a new one is officially going to be here in a few short months.  I don’t have much more time to prepare but… that’s too bad.  Life doesn’t stop even if your heart does… at least this way.

Editor’s note: I recently made a completely dedicated audio blog.  From there you can listen to voice mails left from Bear to me (for purposes of this entry) as well as found sounds and other miscellaneous dialogue from my adventures in the big city.

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He knows- My grandfather’s brave struggle with Alzheimer’s

This morning I woke up physically ill to the point where I had to push back a meeting originally scheduled for this morning to tomorrow thereby making tomorrow’s task list.. a doozy to say the least.  But at least a lot got accomplished and is in process.  Life is an ever evolving (hopefully) series of self processes.

After I went back to bed I woke up only a few minutes later to a phone call from my father:

“Do you want to talk to your grandfather?”

At not even 8am I knew that dad must have finally made his vacation to visit them.  Despite the illness, I obliged… always ready and happy to hear anything I can from my grandparents especially at this most delicate time.

“What are you doing right now?” my grandfather said.

“I’m in bed right now..”

“Is the sun shining?”

“I think so.  Pretty sure.  But I’m in bed right now what are you doing?”

“It’s early there huh?  You don’t sound well.  Are you sick?”

“I’ll live.  What are you guys up to?  When did dad get there?”

“We’re at a graveyard visiting people.  I don’t know when your dad got here.  I don’t remember..”

“You’re where?!”

I got frustrated.  What the hell was my father doing taking my dying grandparents to a graveyard?  I understand the desire to pay his respects to those lost and now in their plots back home but…

and my grandparents, as well as my dad, already have their spots waiting for them.  Potentially in that graveyard.  It made me feel more ill and upset when I even attempted to stomach it.

I would have to talk to my dad about it later.  Just another gap in a huge communication issue.  I couldn’t say anything about it to grandpa.    And even if I did, he probably wouldn’t be in a position to really hear it to understand.

“It’s sunny here and it stopped raining.  We’re just visiting people for a few minutes.  Do you remember Pat Cole?  She played the organ at church.  I remember that lady.  I don’t remember much these days but I remember her.  Or I think I do.”

Pat Cole was ancient when I was a kid.  What I remember was her house being a cluttered mess and always smelling of smoke and formaldehyde.  I remember as a kid that I used to joke that she was already a zombie.  I couldn’t tell grandpa that either though.  I didn’t want to come across as being rude.

“Now we’re in the car going to get your cousin some clothes.  She doesn’t have enough.  We’re going to get her some more…”

I could go onto a tangent about this cousin and that part of the family alone but that’s another one “for another blog”.  Let’s just keep things at my grandfather for now.

“How are you enjoying Ethan being there?”

Grandpa laughed.  You could hear his smile through the phone.  Ethan is his first grandson.  You can almost tell he has a special spot for him.

“He’s a really great kid.  Really really great kid.  Smart little bugger.”

“How are you and gram doing?  Is dad taking you to doctors and things?”

He then went down another path.

“My memory isn’t what it used to be.  I can tell.  I know that something just isn’t right.  I can’t remember what I used to remember easily.  I don’t know why but I just know it’s not right.  All I can do right now is try and make the most of what memories I have and hope these ones I’m making stay put.”

I think about the things my grandpa has told me over the past month over the phone.  Of the phone call I had when I was crying because I felt there was no one I could turn to that could get to my dad like they could… and him floating off into another world where he.. knows he’s barely here anymore.

I don’t know if all men or people in general go through that “knowing” period like he is.  There is a part of me that wonders if this will be my fate as well.  If all the magic that I learned about my grandparents was nothing compared to the magic and wisdom and honesty and compassion I am seeing coming from them in these, possibly their last years.

I don’t want to think about the visits to graveyards with end dates now placed on my grandparents’ headstone.  

I think about how much my grandfather seems to know what is happening and… how brave he is being throughout all of it.  Grandpa is known for being a bit of a cry baby at times… like when he was young and his semi truck got stuck going under the underpass and they had to let all the air out of the tires to get it through and he cried like a baby the whole time.

This wasn’t that guy.  This was… someone different.  Hell, maybe it was a guy who actually learned something throughout all of it.

Grandpa’s strength knowing this gives me hope.  Perhaps knowing and being scared isn’t as terrible as one may think.

Perhaps he already knows that he’s going to be immortal anyway…

Perhaps, because, he already is.

“You need to start listening to other people more” part1

A phone call this afternoon bid the remark in the title of this posting.  As a person who works with communities and does this as a job, I found it interesting that someone would even say something like that.  And then you remember how diametrically opposite some of our personal lives are in comparison to our professional lives.  How many of us fight with that inner struggle of this form of multiple personality disorder?

Analyzing things further: I laughed at the statement.  Because, frankly, it was pretty accurate.  In the recent past I have not listened to my friends in their warnings about Joshie Bear.  People warned me back in the beginning stages that he was a bad idea.  Back in November when he started on… and in December when he was gone for the month visiting family (read: cheating on me with another woman but none of us knew that until recently) or in…

Well you get the idea.

I look back even further.  To my parents.  To my rebellious punk rock days and what not.  About how the fashion and the ideas have continued to flow even after all of that… not completely changed but… evolved as I stepped away from that lifestyle and created another and yet another.

I know that in the past I might have essentially had a similar conversation with my parents.. well… if I had stayed in Illinois and things were a wee bit different but you get the gist of it-

Stevo: Wait, time out. I just wanted to ask real quick, if I can. You believe in rebellion, freedom and love, right?

Mom: Absolutely, yes.

Dad: Rebellion, freedom, love.

Stevo: You two are divorced. So love failed. Two: Mom, your a New Ager, clinging to every scrap of Eastern religion that may justify why the above said love failed. Three: Dad, you’re a slick, corporate, preppy-ass lawyer. I don’t really have to say anything else about you do I dad? Four: You move from New York City, the Mecca and hub of the cultural world to Utah! Nowhere! To change nothing! More to perpetuate this cycle of greed, fascism and triviality. Your movement of the people, by and for the people got you… nothing! You just hide behind some lost sense of drugs, sex and rock and roll. Ooooh, Kumbaya! I am the future! I am the future of this great nation which you, father, so arrogantly saved this world for. Look, I have my own agenda. Harvard, out. University of Utah, in. I’m gonna get a 4.0 in damage. I love you guys! Don’t get me wrong, it’s all about this. But for the first time in my life, I’m 18 and I can say “FUUUUUCK YOU!”

Dad: Steven, I didn’t sell out son. I bought in. Keep that in mind. That kid’s gonna make a hell of a lawyer, huh?

Mom: Yeah, he takes after his father. He’s a son of a bitch.

Dad: Well fuck you dear.

But now, years later (I mean that movie is from 1998 for chrissakes) even after that whole speech and ultimate conclusion of one of my favorite movies of my teenage years, perhaps the message and culmination was telling me more than I knew.  More that…

For the longest time my family and friends have been saying so many things about my potential career path.  Marketing, although that is where my home has been and continues to be when clients surge (btw: Muse for Hire currently- comment here to connect about your projects) it wasn’t the two places I’ve been told I should essentially be since birth: writing and law.

I have stopped my world from evolving with my previous choices in lesser men.  I’m not blaming them.  I made the choices too.  And you can look at even the postings about how much I stopped my world again the last time for this… stupid guy I fell in love with.

I gave Bear so much shit about pushing forward and pushing harder.  He in turn gave me that same “sell out” argument above that… well I had over ten years ago.  He told me recently that he never said he was a grown up but he was trying to be, at thirty five years old and counting he said he was “just a little behind…”  and then he’d made fun of my arguing and corporate tendencies again.

So maybe Bear was right about that initial statement.  Friendship wise.  Career wise.  Life wise.  But not for the reasons he likely thinks.  At the end of the day I guess this likely just makes me a… well, watch the video below and you’ll know the end punchline.

Midday musings: From the Eyes of a Child

A reader of my blog is a recovered alcoholic father.  I went to his blog and found an entry with the video below.  It touched my heart and I felt that I needed to pass it on here as well.

Yesterday I sent this to two important dads in my life… my own and the one of the future little man in my belly.

The message inside applies to more than just dads.  It applies to all parents.  Especially those who are facing their own inner battles.

There is a beacon of hope in a childs’ eyes that is far more magical and real than anything you will ever experience.  It is the greatest gift you will ever be able to give and receive.  It is worth the struggle.  It is worth the change.  It is worth opening your heart up and changing your ways.

Get your hankies and click.

Cracked Lights and Cassette Tapes

Lately I listen to more Cohen than I do Waits.  I’m not sure how to feel about it.  Mr Cohen just seems to pop up more and more fluidly.  Like he did this morning.

I saw a word referencing a leak about a video game news story coming… down the Valve. And instead of following immediately to find out the news, I immediately thought of this quote and subsequent song by Leonard Cohen.

“There is a crack in everything.  That’s how the light gets in.”

This year has had so many life changing moments.  This past week… oh my… it’s been a shark week…

I woke up to a phone call from an office in a land of enchantment.  A land where, coincidentally, someone is returning to as if to take the other’s place.

I thought so much more of that one… and the magic that I thought he helped create.  Like the nuclear explosion in a white dwarf star that makes the world brighter by its occurrence.  And he was, if only for a moment at least.

It wasn’t good news about either non sequitor situation.  It was… a snag in progress.  I have hit so many snags with all of this.  I’ve been starting to lose a bit of hope throughout all of it.

The holiday weekend brought with it so much affirmation and perspective it was mind blowing.  My mind goes through it again and again analyzing each moment and trying to: make peace with it, make sense of it, and change it.

I feel like a jammed cassette tape.

My brain.. under the microscope

(Ps if any of you feel compelled to do so I also wouldn’t mind getting this t-shirt)

I’m about to hit the showers.  Analyze why the phrase hit the showers exists.

(I mean, what did the showers ever do to me beyond get me all clean and smelling good?)

Head downtown to a courthouse with a pen, several notepads, my computer, chargers, and… this heavy heavy heart I have as I trudge through it all.. on the bus system… with an entourage of naysayers strewn across my path.

I think about the words of Mr Cohen once again.  I think about the beauty of enlightenment.  About how the greatest things to happen and the greatest works of literature and art seem to have come from cracked places like this one.

Is it weird that I’m smiling through tears?  That it’s not just society’s’ force that guides me to that smile right now but it’s… this silly stupid optimistic heart?

Maybe I’m just stupid.  Hell I’ve heard that in the past before too.  Either way?  Fuck it.  This is important to me and it’s worth fighting for.  If I don’t, the potential for it to change really is zero.

So here goes [hopefully not] nothing.