Thursday, March 8, 2007

Flickr and writing chapters

Here's a tip of the hat to Mr. db and his song titled, Why

I finally took the plunge and went pro on my Flickr account. It's a good service and it's about time I ponied up some money for it...$25 a year seems fair to me. I uploaded a bunch of photos from my days in the Navy to my account. I used the photos to begin a group for alumni from the ship I was on...the USS Fresno, LST1182. Others will be able to post their photos as well to the group. I'm not sure why I bother though as there seems to be little to no interest in that sort of thing among the guys I'm in touch with. I suppose I do it because I keep thinking/hoping that somebody with an interest will stumble onto them some day and they'll appreciate that they're there. That's good enough for me. I know there were a few camera buffs on the boat with me but to be honest, most of the guys were more interested in getting to port, getting drunk and getting laid than to think about photography. I'm not sure what was up with me. Not that I didn't hang with them occasionally but mostly I was into my bike. I still am.

I was on my bike today and as I often do when I'm riding I let my mind wander. It dawned on me that the 9th anniversary of my divorce from Noy had come and gone without me realizing it. Usually March 5th is a day which causes me to pause as it was a real turning point in my life. I'm still the same guy I was back then but my life is much more fulfilled now. My divorce was without question the most difficult time of my life. I tried more than anyone will ever know to make our marriage work but in the end I just couldn't do it any more. I remember the prayer I had then. I prayed that no matter how it turned out I didn't want to be a bitter person. All I wanted was to be able to move forward with my life...a new beginning, and not be left to a slow bleed of resentment. God has done that for me. I have absolutely no ill feelings toward Noy. I still pray for her daily and likely always will. The one regret I have is that I wasn't able to continue a relationship with my stepsons, David and Joe. I never shared with them what led up to our divorce but I do remember telling Joe that no matter what, if he felt he needed to choose sides that he should absolutely be there for his mother.

Joe came into town last May to move his mom out to San Francisco to be near himself and Dave. Noy was kind enough to call me so we could arrange to meet. For years I'd imagined what that final time together would be like. I'd even discussed this with Tammy. I'd always assumed it would include the four of us and we'd meet at a restaurant for dinner...enjoy each other's company one last time and then close that chapter of our lives. It didn't quite play out that way as Dave couldn't make it. Joe brought his girlfriend with him. I met them at Noy's apartment. We spent a couple hours reminiscing and catching up but there wouldn't be a final dinner together as I'd hoped. It was nice and I very much appreciated the chance to see Joe one last time. He's looking very good and his girlfriend seemed nice. And that was that.

I'd hoped to stay in touch with Joe through emails but I don't want to push. He knows how to get in touch with me but I'm reluctant to impose myself into his life. I was certain that he knew I'd like to remain in touch with him. That hasn't happened and Dave isn't the type to write. No doubt that we had many good years together and those years are a part of the story of my life but there was no storybook ending. It certainly made for an interesting chapter.

Speaking of new beginnings...I was uploading some photos to my Flickr account yesterday and I came across this one It was taken the day my divorce became final. I remember it because it was the day of the international hockey tournament we hosted in Minneapolis for ATC hockey teams around the world. We took 2nd place in our division. I couldn't have known then that one year later Tammy and Rachel would come into my life and totally change my world. I'll save that story for another entry.

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