Mixed Emotions

If I had to describe today with emoji’s, I’d need a lot of them!

Exhaustion – Tuesdays are always difficult. I get very little sleep before having to come into work for the night. I do the best I can to nap when the kids are napping, but things just never seems to line up where we all sleep at the same time.

Confident – Recently I was presented with an opportunity that peaked my interest. It was one of those things that I really wasn’t searching for, but I looked at it very carefully. After much discussion and weighing all the pros and cons, I made a decision that I feel is best.

Afraid – At the same time, looking on the horizon, there is something I stumbled on that has positives and negatives. I took a leap of faith today. It would be a HUGE change. It has been something that has been on the back burner for some time. Whether or not anything comes of it is yet to be seen. If it does, there are some big things to think about and consider.

Angry – Annoyed – Exasperated – Done – One phone call can bring about so many emotions. How many times can the same things be rehashed? When do you just say “Forget it? I’m done?” An hour and 20 minutes of being on speaker phone being accused, judged, called every profane name imaginable, and treated like a piece of crap is not exactly how I want to spend my time. Once you apologize for something, you shouldn’t be expected to keep apologizing for it over and over again. Especially when the other party has said they forgive you. My God, it was a vicious circle of things that are from years ago, yet here we are talking about it again! Enough is enough. If you can’t get past it, I don’t know what to tell you. Don’t feel sorry for me or my family, because quite frankly, we are fine! Please just let it go!

Dedicated – It is time for me to stop letting the outside BS affect me and my family. I am dedicated to being the best husband and father I can be to those who will let me. I have found happiness and NO ONE will take that away from me. I love my family more than I will ever be able to express here, and intend to keep it together. Leave your negativity at the door or better yet, keep it away. There is LOVE, tenderness, faith, and joy in my house! I intend to increase those feelings with every moment I am alive!

Sadness – With every day my kids continue to grow up. Ella will be two this week. I am having a very difficult time wrapping my head around that. Andrew will be 4 months old this week and it seems like time won’t slow down. Sam has often said to me that she feels when she is done with work for the week, she feels like the look older and are bigger. I feel the same way. Despite having gone through this with my two older sons, it feels like time is going by even faster than before.

I will end on a positive emotion:

Happiness – This week, Ella started saying, “I love you, too, Daddy.” and “I love you, too, Mommy” after we tell her that we love her. There is nothing that will melt your heart faster.

Earlier today, Andrew was laying on the floor and he was giggling. I snapped a picture of him and Ella immediately came over and laid next to him and said, “My turn, Daddy!” In an absolute amazing moment, she grabbed his hand and I snapped the picture.

THAT IS WHAT MATTERS! Those two amazing kids (and my beautiful and wonderful wife) are the source of my happiness. There is nothing but joy connected with them. There is no negativity. There is no hate. There are no grudges. There are no hidden motives. There is LOVE. There is JOY. There is HAPPINESS. There is DELIGHT. There is LAUGHTER.

This is what is important! THEY are what is important.

On my bad days, those two special kids remind me to focus on what really matters!

Blog # 300!!

Another Milestone

Well, here it is – my 300th blog post. To be completely honest, I have a few more than 300, but some were kept private. So this is my 300th “published” blog. Over the past few blogs, I knew this milestone blog was coming, and wondered just how a blogger celebrates this kind of achievement. I found that most look back and reflect on stats.

I don’t know about doing that. Does it matter that the most popular day my blog is viewed is Thursday? Are you impressed that in the first 299 blogs I have written 64,488 words? Does it thrill you to know that each blog averages about 921 words? I highly doubt that means anything to you.

A Short Reflection

300 blogs. It is amazing to actually look back and see the wide variety of content that I covered since beginning this blog:

  • The blog is full of many posts about music – some about specific tunes (Tune Tuesday) and some filled with many songs.
  • There have been many blogs about television – whether it be actual shows or just theme songs.
  • I have also written many blogs about movies – some as part of blogathons hosted by other bloggers and some of my personal favorites.
  • There have been blogs about holidays from throughout the year – some contain specific memories and some are just general thoughts.
  • I have written special blogs to family and friends – my mom, my dad, my grandparents, my godfather, my kids, my wife, and my lifelong friends.
  • There have been no shortage of radio stories about listeners and coworkers.
  • Some blogs were just full of random thoughts and observations.
  • There were blogs about celebrities – some funny, some musical, some just for the hell of it.
  • I shared the love story of my wife and me.
  • I shared with family and friends the news on our miracle baby and blogged about the days that led up to her arrival.
  • Of course, after she was born, there have been many wonderful stories and things to share about her as she continues to grow up.
  • I was honored to have my brother write a guest blog for me (and hope to have more in the future).
  • I opened up about many personal things – my divorce, thoughts on suicide, the changes in my personal life, reflections on life and death, my faith, and so many other topics I kept to myself.
  • There have been some “Question and Answer” blogs that contained things asked of me by friends and family.

Looking back, I am impressed with myself. Who knew I had it in me?

New Connections

If you have a Facebook, you know that they will occasionally give you friend suggestions. They will offer up “People You May Know.” Many of those suggestions stem from mutual friends. There are people that pop up and I have 65 mutual friends with them because we went to the same high school together, or we both have the same radio friends, etc…

With this blog, we don’t have that feature. However, through searching things for things like movies, TV, music, and such, I have found many bloggers that share my interests. I follow quite a few blogs and continue to add more to my “read” list. Some of those bloggers offer up personal stuff like I do on occasion. Some respond with personal stories to my personal blogs. Through that, I feel like I know many of them.

Max is a good example of this. He has blogged about things I remember and vice versa. We also share many of the same musical tastes. He actually helped me set up the index on the side of the blog. Since doing that, more of my older blogs are being read than before. We swapped e-mails and eventually phone numbers. When I called him to talk about the index and creating some pages, it was like talking to someone I had known for years. How cool is that?

Lessons Learned

After 300 blogs, I think it is important to note some of the things I have learned since the beginning. If you are a new blogger, maybe some of my observations can be useful to you.

Even with spellcheck, I make mistakes. I found going back through some older blogs that there are some typos. Some are spelling mistakes, some are grammatical. My one radio buddy, who also works for a newspaper, told me I need an editor. He then proceeded to tell me I couldn’t afford him! I need to be better at proofreading.

There really is no way to know which blogs will be popular. I have written blogs that I think will get a great response, only to see that is not the case. At the same time, I have written blogs that I feel are just “ok” topics, and had a ton of hits on it. You never really know. It hurts your ego a bit when a blog you think is great is barely read, but that’s the way it goes sometimes.

Keywords matter. I try to include as many “tags” as I can with each blog. I have found that this will ultimately lead to more followers and readers. My most read blog? It is about a scammer. I got an e-mail saying that someone noticed I spelled a word wrong and said I should download some app. With research, I found the app is actually something you want to avoid. The keyword “Scam” or “Scammer” has lead to many reading that blog and some even commenting saying that they got the same type of e-mail.

The personal blogs I wrote about suicide, divorce, staying positive, dealing with a narcissist, and depression led to many new people following this blog. Some went as far as to reach out and share their own stories about those things. You know, sometimes, it helps to know you aren’t the only one dealing with those issues.

Each blog represents a moment in time. It represents what I felt at a certain moment in time. Early on in my therapy, I was angered easily. I didn’t realize how certain things by certain people triggered it. I was not a pleasant person. Over time, I have learned to not let those things trigger anger. I have learned coping skills. I am a different person than who I was.

Think about your favorite TV show. Did you like it immediately? The first time I watched Seinfeld or Cheers, I was not impressed. Over time, I came to enjoy the shows more. At one moment in time, you may feel one way, and over time you can feel another way.

Many of my blogs are memories that I want to preserve for the future. Other blogs are about things I have observed. At the time, I felt a certain way about things – over time, my thoughts or feelings might change. It helps to keep that in perspective.

Write about what you are passionate about! Chances are if you are passionate about it, a reader will find it interesting. This same principle was suggested to me when I worked in radio. Share things that “make you feel!” Some readers love my musical blogs while some prefer my more personal ones. I am passionate about everything I write, however, not all things will appeal to everyone. Anyone who comes to this blog will see my love for all things entertainment, but also see my love for my family and my children!

Another principle from radio that translated to writing a blog is to simply “observe life.” Look around and take notice. A successful stand up comedian is one who observes little things, talks about it, and the audience says “Oh yeah! I have noticed that too!” George Carlin was a master observer! Take those things that you observe and relay them. You know the whole “which way should the toilet paper roll go on” thing was simply something that someone wondered about, right!?

I always loved the above Far Side Cartoon. It points out another lesson I have learned. Be yourself. You don’t have to agree with everything I write. That’s ok. You have a right to disagree with me. However, when I write, I’m going to be myself.

While it can sometimes feel like work, I find blogging to be fun. I enjoy writing. I also enjoy hearing from readers who comment on my blog. That’s as much fun as writing them.

There are some blogs that I just sit and write. Others (most of them), it takes time to plan out. Either way, I try to give myself time to think it through and get the flow. It takes time and sometimes, you have to MAKE time to write.

So there you have it ….

Blog #300. As a follower, I need to say thank you. I am truly glad that you are here. I always welcome your suggestions. How can I make this blog more enjoyable for you? Would you like to be a guest blogger? Please feel free to let me know. What do you like? What don’t you like? Feel free to suggest other blogs I might be interested in. Feel free to share this one with others.

Thank you so much for reading. Here is to the next 300 ….