Tuesday, November 27, 2012

B27 - 2000 hits, Skype and Dad's Birthday

The past 10 days have been filled with travel, family, relaxing, various offline projects . . . and, a some laziness also thrown into the mix.

All-in-all, it's been an amazing time.

I was pleasantly surprised when I came to Swirlings today and noticed that the hits counter was right-smack-dab on 2,000! 

That brings me to my first Blessings for today's post . . . y'all.  I deeply appreciate everyone who takes the time to read what twirls and swirls within my grey matter.  Swirlings will be 8 months old this Sunday; and in those 8 months, I have made 50 posts (not counting today's blogging).  Averaging that gives an average of 250 hits per month or 40 hits per blog post.   Yay for y'all!  :)

I hope that you will continue to read Swirlings, and that you will also share my links with your friends and family. 

I'm also interested in hearing from you.  Always feel free to leave your comments to any of the posts.

Technology is my second Blessing for today.  I often marvel at the way that our forefathers and ancestors lived.  In the grand scheme of things, it's only been in recent generations that day-to-day living was not simply about survival. 

Today, pretty-much whatever we want to accomplished can be done by pushing a button. 

Sometimes I rail against how utterly spoiled we are today, compared to even a few years ago.  I opine regarding how lazy technology has made us.

But.  I also recgonize the tremendous advantages that technology affords us.

Thanksgiving evening is one such personal example.

Am1, DelawareBoy and Mr. Handsome (our 9-year old grandson) moved back to Delaware a few months ago.  I have missed seeing them and being able to hug them.  They are often the topic of conversations between Tex and me.  We hope that they all are happy and doing well.  We pray for them often. 

Thursday evening, thanks to modern technology, we were able to Skype with Am1 and Mr. Handsome.  "We" being Tex, Am2, Little Miss, Bruiser Charmer Boy and me.  Well, actually, I don't think Bruiser did much chatting, but he did baby-babble through some portions of the conversations.  Who knows; maybe he was imparting fascinating and wondrous secrets to his big cousin, Mr. Handsome.

It was SO wonderful to be able to see Am1 and Mr. Handsome's faces!  It was the first time I had seen them since the left Texas, back in August.

Skype, thank you! 

My 3rd Blessing for today regards my father.

As a clarifying reminder . . . whenever I speak of my parents I am specifically speaking of my adoptive parents; not my birth parents.

Dad was also my step-grandfather.  I was 3 months old when he and my grandmother received custody of me, and it was about a year later when my adoption was finalized.

My memories of Dad during my childhood are a strange, eclectic mix.  My mother (maternal grandmother) was alive for the first 10 years of my life.  Alcoholism was rampant between the two of them.  After she died, Dad went even deeper into the bottle.

As a teenager, he and I did not get along.  While I didn't know it then, I was rebelling against the alcoholism that I had lived in all of my life.  Some of the effects of such lifestyle from a tenderly-young age were not at all pretty.

In fact, one of my very earliest memories is of abuse.  I grew up experiencing a variety of abuses; none of them, however, are really pertinent to today's post.

As negatively as I felt toward Dad throughout all those years, I also knew that he would never physically harm me.  It's quite a paradox, I know; but nonetheless, it is the truth.  I despised his drinking and the havoc it wreaked, but I also knew that he would never physically hurt me.  For me, that was a rarity back then.

Dad died when I was in my mid 20's. 

One of the biggest Blessings that I will be continually thankful for is that a year before he died, we were able to come to an understanding of each other and we were also able to forgive each other for all the junk we both had inflicted upon each other.  I was able to tell him about my experiences that no child should ever have; so many secrets that he never knew about.   And, he believed me; without question.  That, in itself, is another Blessing that I deeply cherish.

That last year of Dad's life was such a tremendous Blessing.  Forgiveness is a wonderful gift; both for the one being forgiven and also for the one doing the forgiving.  With Dad and I, both of us were both forgiver and forgivee.

Today commemorates my father's birthday.  He would be 91 years old if he were alive. 

The man fought in 3 wars (WWII, Korea and Vietnam).  He was a naval fighter pilot; and while it's not an excuse and while I very much believe in people taking personal responsibility for themselves, part of the alcoholsim that he inflicted upon himself was connected to how he militarily served his country.  I know because as a teenager I often heard the alcohol-induced nightmares he would have regarding some of his experiences during those 3 wars.  It's an ongoing reminder for me to always be genuinely thankful for the myriad sacrifices that our military personnel willingly give in order that they can serve and protect our country.  

Lest I leave you with a lop-sided view of my dad, I'd like to close by saying that aside from the alcoholism, I also have some good memories our relationship with each other.  Even with all the ick and yuck that we went through, I know that he genuinely loved me.  That, in and of itself, is a treasure.

Here's to you, Dad.
All my love,

Thanks for reading, y'all!
May y'all each be abundantly blessed.

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