Praying for Gray and Mason

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One of the podcasts I enjoy listening to is Everyday Gamers. It is a fun and entertaining podcast concerning gaming, mainly. It’s a show you can listen to with your kids around. One of the hosts, Jay Sims, who goes by MeefJ on Twitter, can use your prayers. I won’t relate their entire story here, but he and his wife have young twins, Gray and Mason, that were born early. Gray is pretty healthy, as far as it goes, however, Mason has had one trial after another and must have constant medical attention. August 26, they had to put him intubate and paralyze him. This poor baby has been through so much, but now it all seems to be coming to a head.

Please, please pray for this fine family and their child. Having a child close in age to their’s and seeing the photos today has brought tears to my eyes. Going back through the Facebook page and seeing some of the videos of Mason laughing and playing versus the horrible things he has to endure had me crying out right tonight before I typed this. So please, take a moment and send a prayer out for this sweet baby.

Prayers, good vibes, healing thoughts, and just the acceptance that what is best for Mason will be done. Visit their Facebook page – Praying for Gray and Mason – to learn more about the family and their journey with the twins, including current updates on little Mason’s condition.

Thank you!

Fork In The Road

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There’s a lot going on in my life right now. That’s not to downplay events going on in other people’s lives, of course. Just a statement from me about my own personal experiences. My family, too, has stuff and things going on because, well, we’re all in the same boat. It isn’t anything horrible or life threatening, but there are events transpiring that we could do without. As a result of these events, my wife has taken on some extra duties, I’ve picked up some significant overtime at work (while it’s available), and our kids are hanging in there while we chug along. Our oldest son is back to school (home school, that is), a sixth grader this year. Our youngest is ransacking the house and taking advantage of being the youngest.

On a more personal level, pulling back and being selfish for a moment, I’d like to talk about myself. I say selfish, but, hey, it’s my blog, darn it! :) I kid! I kid …

I think it was already well in play when I mentioned a post or two back about “that other guy,” and going in to work and finally having had enough. I met my former self that day for the first time in some years. Didn’t like the guy, as you already know from that particular post. But that wasn’t the end of my moment, I’ll call it. Since that Friday, I’ve been in a sort of mood mixture. A bit of depression/anxiety/meditation/prayer/reflection. I’ve just been flipping through a bunch of different thoughts and emotions and trying to work out what I’m suppose to be doing in life.

We won’t call it a mid-life crisis, since I’m only 39. I’d prefer to call it, reaching the fork in the road.

I’ll be 40 next month. No, I’m not the first or last person to hit The Big 4-0, but at my current point in life, it seems like a gigantic milestone. A milestone that I’m not really looking forward to. This blog hasn’t really helped me accept it, either. I look back at all the potentially life-changing blog posts I’ve written about life, weight loss, broadening my horizons, and I realize how I’ve come up short on all of those things. That’s not to say I’m not proud of other aspects of my life, not at all! I have two awesome kids, a good job (that has a questionable future), and a wife that has stuck with me through thick and thin – though we may have other issues that need to be ironed out. In other words, It isn’t anything in my “outside” world that is causing me to pause in reflection. It’s the “inside” of my world that’s causing me to falter a bit and wonder where I misstepped.

In all truthfulness, I took the wrong steps by being dismissive and lazy. I wrote strong worded posts but then ignored them and stuffed my face with the closes back of Nacho Cheese Doritos. They were tasty, but they’re not something I want to carry into my 40’s with. So, here I am with this blog post. At a fork in the road with two paths to choose from. On the right, I have the same road I’ve been on. It’s a continuation of Lazy Lane, and it’ll continue to carry me on to the same end results. But, over on the left, we have Rocky Road, which has the potential to take the long way around and make me arrive in a better place, but with more work, sweat, blood and tears.

The answer is obvious, of course. Who in their right mind would take Lazy Lane, right? No sane person is going to write a blog post about how they want to continue failing on a personal level, gaining weight to equal a VW Beetle and ending their life in a fast food induced heart attack. That’d be stupid. No, it’d be worse. It would be akin to suicide, I think. So the correct answer has always been Rocky Road. Right?

I know what you’re saying: “But, James, you’ve pleaded this case hundreds of times before and never done anything about it. You lazy !@#$%%!@#$.” And you’re right! No denying the truth, it’s all here in black and white, categorized by day, month and year. So what makes this any more special than the other 15 dozen posts about change?

Nothing, really.

Just that I’ve reached that fork and have no where else to go. I either succeed or fail. I’ve already reached an emotional point of no return, a physical point of morbid failure, and a spiritually broken wheel that can’t stand another turn without fear of breaking the axle. So, there it is. Here it is. Here I am.

Once more, unto the breach.

  • J

New “Podcasts Worth A Listen”

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I just updated my Podcasts Worth A Listen page with my current playlist. Added:

Sneak Attack! An Original D&D Adventure

You Lose! Podcast

Married to the Games

If you’re looking for something new to listen to, go check these shows out. Good crews on each, good topics and the shows are all entertaining.

That Other Guy

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A year or so back, I made a series of blog posts about how I’d like to get my groove back. As usual, nothing came of those posts, other than wishful thinking. It’s not that I didn’t want the groove, it was just that I was a) busy with life, and b) too lazy to do anything about it. In case you’ve forgotten, the groove I’m referring to is that attitude you achieve when everything is perfect. Not everything in your life, but with you. Your walk, your confidence, your attitude, your dealings with other people, and above all else, the way you carry yourself with all of that mushed together inside. It’s your groove, do what you want to do.

This last Friday, I hit that stride, achieved that groove I’ve been wanting to return to. But here’s the thing – I realized that to hit that particular groove I’ve been missing, was to revert back to something I no longer was. Maybe that was a simple thing for you guys to understand just in reading, but for me, I was taken aback. I was thinking all this time about the feeling I had while carrying myself with that groove perfection, but I never stopped to really look around at my life at that point in time that I had it. To be perfectly honest, the guy I used to be was kind of an asshole – pardon my language – and Friday, that’s what I was, too.

It just wasn’t a really good day Friday, and evidently everything fell right into place to trigger that attitude I’d been missing. I would talk, people would listen. I would walk, they’d move out of the way. I would say, they’d do. I was angry, hateful, mean and blunt to the point of either hurting relationships or losing them. So after a year or more of searching for the right switch to flip to reactivate that dormant personality, I finally found it. But it was no longer me there.

As with the majority of us, we age and grow and become adults with responsibilities and families and jobs that require our attention and time. Blood, sweat, tears – all that jazz. We have to adjust and reevaluate factors in our lives. I guess as I aged and grew and moved on, there just wasn’t room for that butthead I used to be to come with me. I had to leave him and his groove behind. In the past. Gone, but not forgotten. So … what do I do now?

I suppose the answer to my own question is to stop living in the past. It’s done and over with. Can’t go back to it, probably wouldn’t want to, to be honest. But I – we – have the whole future before us. The present all around us. Family, friends, coworkers, etc, are all here in the now and looking at us. We can decide what they see, and I don’t want them to see that other guy again, after meeting him all these years later myself. I want them to see someone better, that’s learned a thing or two. I want them to see the new groove. Hell, I’d like to see the new groove myself!

The other guy is gone. My job now is to create my own groove. A new groove that’s a cleaner, more smooth and upgraded groove compared to the original prototype. My job is to take the sass-talking jerk and reverse engineer that sucker so I can build something new and more suitable for my current situation. But above all else, I have to remember what it is that I don’t want in it so that part can be left in the trash where it belongs.

Just because we hit a rut in the road of life doesn’t mean we should revert back to what we used to think was working for us. Truth is, the past is there to learn from and build upon, no go back to and live in. With that said, here’s to my new adventure. No, not getting my groove back, but instead, building a new one that will express just who I am today, not yesterday.

Sideways Into Darkness #1: Work Burnout Discussion

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My first episode created with the on-the-go Opinion app for the iPhone. In this one, I quickly run down one of the main reasons I’m feeling a little burnt out on my job. If you have about 8 minutes to spare, give it a listen and let me know what you think.

For regular visitors – yes, I have done a couple of podcasts in the past. Since it’s been so long since the last one, I’m relaunching the whole thing with this new app. Raw footage, minimal editing done within the app, no frills. Just a quick 10 minutes or so of opinion and talk. I’m working on a way to better distribute for the one or two that might actually want to give it a listen. Opinion App supposedly offers extremely easy iTunes Podcast Directory listing. We’ll see about that! :)

I hope to do better with the second episode, as far as posting. Must learn more about the app’s features. In the mean time, if you’re interested, please feel free to visit the link below for my official episode one relaunch!

SID #1: Work Burnout Discussion (