Sunday, July 27, 2008

Determination and a new Direction

Several things have happened since the last time I blogged.

1) I am now 28 years old

2) I officially got a new job in a different department at SEL. I work in Shipping now.

3) Kim and I broke up

4) I found out that, due to how much Child Support I get, I make just a bit over the maximum to get Rental Assistance.

So yeah, I just found out that I won't be getting rental assistance, kind of lame. I've been having a hard time affording being a single parent without paying rent so I was assuming my qualifications for assistance were a no brainer. I guess not.

Let me try to figure out the Logic, when we were a family of 4, 2 adults and 2 children, we qualified for rental assistance and used it right up until we hit about the 38k or 40k mark. Now I am a single income parent with 2 kids, thats a family of 3, and yet the maximum amount I can make and still get assistance is 24k.

I find it highly absurd, as regardless of how I budget, if I dont find the crappiest possible apartment or the worlds best deal then I will be paying more for rent than a single paycheck can handle, more than 50% of my income will go towards rent and I don't freakin qualify for assistance.

Now, Im not angry about this in the sense that you might think I am. Yes, I am angry, but I am perfectly fine with the fact that I will not be getting this assistance. What I am pissed the fuck off about is that I have been going through this process and waiting for this to go through for over half of a freaking year. This if fucking bullshit that I have waited this god damned long for NOTHING to happen, how is it so fucking difficult to Pre-Fucking-Screen people.

Yes, I know I just said the "F" word a lot. Thats become semi-unusual for me, but I am genuinly frustrated in this situation. The advantage is that I do find the whole process and the act of getting assistance of this nature fairly degrading and demoralizing.

I've been trying to work out a future budget so that I can see what I am looking at Month to Month while paying rent and other bills. Between Rent and all my other bills, including Gas but not including Groceries, I am looking at $1500 per month. If you count child support I bring in less than $1900 on average.

Thats cutting it pretty god damned close if you ask me, but Im out of options at this point, the struggles in life are what make us who we are and I am unwilling to let such a challenge discourage me.

Unfortunatly I am not as prepared for this eventuality as I would have wanted. I imagine I will have enough money saved up to safely move out by October or November, and that brings me to the other reason this situation has totally F'ed me, and that is TIMING. Though it could be argued that I also F'ed myself in this situation, so I willingly accept part of the blame (though only grudgingly as, if a proper "PRE-FUCKING-SCREENING" process had been in place I would have planned accordingly 7 MONTHS ago). By the time I can afford to move out on my own the students will all be back in full force and that will limit my options.

As of this point all spending is on 100% lockdown. Every penny not going to a bill is going to be saved from here on out (for those of you who know me, you understand just how difficult this will be for me, if you're not already laughing hystaricaly at the concept).

Now that that is out of my system I would like to mention that my Ex-Wife Nicole is girlifying my children. I know thats not a word, but I wasn't sure how to put it. Feminanizing. Going through the Estrogenation Process. The list could go on and on, and if I wasn't refering to my children I had thought of several others that while funny, were in bad taste considering the reference.

What I mean is that they have Barbie Toothbrushes down there, watch and listen to Hannah Montana and Tristan is supposedly asking them to refer to him as Ariel (Nicole's favorite disney character). Ahh, the things kids from broken homes do to make each individual parent happy. Though if I take a broader view I dont think Nicole could do anything more to make me the cooler parent even if she tried.

I really just wanted to be funny, I don't have much of a problem with it at all, its really kind of entertaining. The issue comes from the fact that their 2 months with their mom are going to be in very sharp contrast to their 10 months with me, and I don't think thats a healthy way to conduct business.

So I wanted to mention that my new job is really kicking my ass while I get used to it. A lot more physical than my last position. I am looking into playing tennis more regularly and starting to walk (if I didnt put all expenditures on hold I would look into getting a bike).

I have started writing, slowly but surely I have been putting together some ideas and concepts for a new novel idea or it could possibly become a group of short stories or novella's on similar themes. I am currently just working on being habitual about my writing while brainstorming my content.

My reading has taken a backseat unfortunatly, I am still reading, just not as quickly as before. I have also started taking more time to play all the way through video games instead of finishing only 1/3 of them.

Also, I thought I heard a new Rage Against the Machine song on the radio the other day, but I haven't seen anything about a new single or anything similar to my knowledge. If you have any information please let me know!

Anyway, final thoughts. Ill be fine. This is one of those situations where I rise to the occasion, so its finally time to get my shit together and get something done.

Saturday, July 12, 2008


Bless me, Father, for I have sinned. It has been six weeks since my last Blog.

It has been nearly six weeks since I posted my last blog. Though technically I am not classifying this as a "Blog" in my "Category". I am going to choose the category "Writing and Poetry". I don't intend for this to become a short story, but my hope is that this will transcend blog-hood and become something more. I intend to start using my "Blog" as a writing tool to kick start a change in my writing habits.

After all, I am a Writer.

Today is Saturday, it has been 2 weeks since my boys boarded a plane by themselves to fly down to Phoenix. 5 weeks and 2 days left. I spoke with them yesterday again, they are doing well, having fun. They called to tell me about their new Pokemon cards, Tristan said that some of the cards are copies of cards he has up here.

2 weeks ago I was at the airport nearly 2 hours in advance, my friend Russ went with me to support me as he knows how hard things like this can be on me. It went very smoothly, both Russ and I were given access to the Gate as 'escorts'. The boys were the first on the plane, it happened so suddenly, I was on the phone with Nicole telling her that boarding was about to start when suddenly it started and the boys were almost gone! They each stopped before they got to the hall leading to the plane and they ran to give me one final hug and kiss goodbye, they told me they loved me and that they would miss me.

Language is such a powerful thing, it wasn't all that long ago that my kids could barely converse with me, let alone each other. But now all they do is yap it up in the back seat, Jadon likes to exaggerate stories while Tristan likes to be a know-it-all. I constantly hear them talking and arguing and once they really butt heads its "Daddy! Tell Tristan/Jadon that Im right and hes wrong" lol.

No, seriously, Language is awesome. Telling someone you love them is nice, but hearing it can be amazing. My mom, my grandparents, other family, my girlfriend and my ex-wife have all told me that they love me. It feels really good! Absolutely nothing compares to the very first time one of your children tells you they love you.

Like I said, today is Saturday. I was intending on going camping for the weekend with my Mom and Stepdad, Russ and his family and his parents. Yesterday I found out that I would have to work today for a few hours. Kind of messed with my plans for the weekend.

I still could have gone camping, though I wouldn't have gotten out there until 6 or 7 at night more than likely. Then I would be home 24 hours later, more of a hassle than anything at that point. Work was almost nice though, provided me with a good excuse to stay home alone for the weekend.

I love camping, but some part of me really just wanted to kick my feat up at home, alone. Do some thinking. I go into a kind of emotional funk when the kids are gone. I feel like I am doing better than last summer, way better. So perhaps people are telling me the truth when they say it gets easier.

First I had an idea for a game I wanted to create, but Im not a programmer. Then I had an idea for a website I wanted to make, but Im not a web designer. I could be either, I have studied both in school and I was even working towards a degree for web development. But as interesting as those things sound to me (and they really do), thats not who I want to be. Ive struggled with my identity and my path for a long time now, since High School.

The reason for said struggle is that my two main interests, very early on, got set aside as they did not seem like great career paths to me. Those two main interests are Writing and History. And at this point in my life I am so ridiculously tired of wasting half my life on things that are not interesting, things I dont want to be doing, that I think its finally time to set my sights on something I am begining to feel that I was meant to do.

I called myself a writer near the beginning of this "blog". How dare I call myself that, I haven't written more than a plot layout since I was in High School. Its probably been twelve years since I wrote my last short story. Most of my time writing is spent on blogs or similar. I am a writer at heart though and its time for me to prove it, to myself esspecially. I have skirted around the issue long enough, I have put it aside again and again. History is my other main interest and I have been studying history independantly more and more as time goes on. Though I read as much historical fiction as I read genuine history...

Its time for me to start writing my ass off, I just need to do it. I need to stop wasting my life, I need to stop working jobs that dont interest me. Ofcourse, Im going to keep my dayjob, I dont intend on "hitting it big" writing, I would have a better chance of winning the lottery. But when people say "what do you do?" I can say, "I write, Im a writer" and they will go "Oh? anything I may have read" and I will say "Probably not, unless you've hacked into my computer", they they will say "Oh" and then I will ask "have you hacked into my computer?" and they will look at me with a bewildered look on their face while they retort "uh, No" at which point in time I will let out a deep breath and say "Oh whew, you had me worried for a second" then I will walk off in the opposite direction. Sure, working in customer service or on a manufacturing floor, or whatever piece of shit job I happen to be doing, might be how I pay the bills. That does not define WHO I am.

Its time for me to stop letting the illusions in my life beat me down. Time to stop worrying about the mundane and start being the person I was meant to be, a person both myself and my children can be proud of.

I am a Writer.
I am a Father.
I am Ready...