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The Incredible Shrinking Man

No, not around the waist. We'll call that a stalemate. At least I'm not losing that battle.

I just feel smaller. Which is funny, cause it' my world that s shrinking.

We just put our dog down. He had chronic orthopedic issues. It's hard seeing the life still in your friend's eyes, and having to make that call. It's logical to rationalize and justify euthanasia. Still, I set my gym clothes by the stairs, and he's not there. I go to scrape my leftovers in his dish, it's gone. No annoying click-click of his nails on the floors. Silence.

One of our cats was struck and killed a couple weeks back. We buried her in the herb garden, next to the catnip plant. She's next to Buddy, our Maine Coon that was killed a few years back. My daughter's gerbils are buried a few feet from there.

Death is all around. Cliché, but fact. I keep my Mom and Dad in the closet. She has a nice urn, my Dad is in a more utilitarian box. They passed in 2011 and 2014, respectively.
My wife is a wreck. She lost her father last year, and now her mother just a couple of months ago (They are in the same large urn, romantic no?).
The dog and cat that just died were kinda hers. Well, the cat just tolerated her more than the other cats. But the dog? He was her Dog. Howled when she came home. He swung his tail so vigorously, he broke stuff. She's cried a lot. Had to take time off of work.

The kids are handling things okay. My daughter fights depression (which, of course, she inherited from MY side of the family). She focuses on her ne'er-do-well boyfriend. He's not a bad young man... there's too much there to cover now. My son looks fine on the outside. Excelling at his school activities, doting over his girlfriend. He's even building a motorized bicycle. Today he's taking the kayak out to cheer on our school's rowing team. Still, that whole "still waters run deep" vibe.

I worry about my family, what's left of it. I just don't feel there's enough of me left to "take care" of things. Physically, I'm more tired now. I probably need some of that testosterone crap. I don't visit here (WF) as much because honestly, even writing takes energy I ain't got. A friend keeps pushing me toward higher-paying (and higher stress) jobs. He knows I can do it. After this, I have to write him back and again explain why I won't promote-up. I don't need a better job. I must focus on the one I have.

My job is my family. Self-doubt is normal, but for the first time in my life I really feel like I just passed the tip of the bell curve. I'll be contributing less substantially to the family. Not from choice, it's just so much harder now it seems. No one needs me and what I can offer is of less and less value.
But I still need to be here, with my family. Not at the distribution center in Virginia un-screwing their logistical clusterbomb. There's not enough of me to go around. That's life. Pick your priorities. Know what matters.


Dear Winston, I’m a little late responding
so by now with summer here I hope things
look brighter. My response to your words;
things go in cycles and while you think
they don’t need you now, that will change.
Sometimes the tide goes out, in nature the same as in our lives. But don't forget that it never fails to return, in nature as well as our lives. only to return later. Be of good cheer and never give up. Keep on keeping on.
I would offer you sympathy....but as a friend that would be wrong. Life is all around you. You are measured by what you do for others, not just by them, but the world around you. The more people and living things that depend on you, the more of a difference you make in life. It not only brings meaning to your life but to theirs.

Everyone is tired, everyone has a reason to not do more. Instead of retreating back into yourself, look for someone or something that needs you, spend a little of what you are, on something else. It could be a kid without a dad, a pet without a home. The less you do for others the less value you place on yourself.

It's hard to feel like a man when you don't act like one, hard to feel like your winning when you gave up, halfway up the mountain. All the good stuff in life comes at a cost. A good marriage, kids that respect and adore you and friends and workers that respect you.

Tuesday mentioned cycles in life...you don't need to wait to help someone, they are all around you, if you just open your eyes. The road to depression is littered with to much time and energy spent on oneself.

Your in my prayers for strength buddy.

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