Sunday, August 2, 2009

Sweating to the oldies and everything else

I'm actually listening to Counting Crows, My Friend Steve, Death Cab for Cutie, Bob Marley, Matchbox 20, and Steve Miller Band right now (i.e. not Richard Simmons in his short shorts) but our A/C went out on Saturday AM so we are literally sweating to everything. We have two A/C units for our house and one of the controllers would not work so I messed with the other one trying to figure out what was wrong with the first. Well I fucked up the other one so as of Saturday morning we had no A/C in the house at all and August in FLA is not quite as enjoyable without it as I'm sure you can imagine.

I grew up begging my parents every day for a pool once we moved to FLA and they never did it. To this day they still come over to my house and swim all the time. In fact, when Hope and I bought our first house the very first thing we did was put in a pool. How anyone lives in FLA without a pool and especially in the summer when your A/C goes out I'll never understand. Thanks mom, I know you read this so here's one more thing you can feel guilty about because that's what mom's do for the most part. I won't bring up the other ones that get you going like when you spanked my bottom until your hand hurt more than my bum or threw a hyper mental spasm as we lovingly refer to it.

When I think about how I grew up and everything went through or worse what my parents went through when they were kids versus now it's amazing the difference. Our children are so freaking spoiled and they have absolutely no clue how easy they have it (I'll bet my mom wrote a journal saying the same thing because there were no blogs or twitters back in the day, I'm not sure she had electricity yet). Every once in a while when the kids are fussing because they don't get to have ice cream at that moment knowing they will have it in a few hours or had it a few hours earlier I just want them to go back to my childhood or even worse my parents' childhood. I have a strong work ethic because I watched my mom and grandparents work so hard and struggle with every penny they earned to get through the month and while my kids watch me work hard I'm not sure it's the same. I worry my own children and their generation won't have the same ethics for hard work and honesty. Anything to get ahead and get money fast seems to be what I hear more then what can I do to work harder and earn more.

Now I seriously did not have it bad at all even though we grew up with basically no money except the bare minimums (on welfare at times --- my mom no matter how tough it got would not let us be on the reduced lunches at school because she did not want other kids to tease us) because I never felt unsafe or unloved as a child thanks to Mom (even though I love busting on her now I owe everything to my mom and her parents, Gram and Gramp). We may have had a tiny apartment, all borrowed furniture, hand-me-down or homemade clothes from our cousins, a black and white TV with rabbit ears, but we were never lacking of love and safety. I know I've told you many times before Mom, but I will never be able to thank you enough no matter how much I bust on you and I hope my children have half the gratitude Kurt and I owe you as you sacrificed everything to take care of us first. I love you mom, even though I don't say it enough.

Enough of the sappy stuff, since we had no A/C I took the boys all day shopping (maybe I'm the problem even though we had not done this since before Hope passed), running errands, we tried the movies but didn't make it, and anything else that had A/C. We played all morning until it started to get really hot, and then all 3 of us jumped in the shower to clean up (it's summer so normally cleaning up relies on chlorine and not actual soap and heated water) because it had been a couple of days for the boys. By the way, at what age should we stop showering together? It's so easy I don't want to ever stop but I'm thinking if Nathan is in junior high school doing it with others maybe it's time to stop with Dad. If it's illegal then I'm just kidding as far as you know.

Since Kurt left I've spent the week with just the 3 of us for the most part, doing nothing but stuff around the house. I did not drink at all most of the nights just to make sure I could (whew, I was starting to worry but it wasn't hard at all just needing to work in new routines) so we just stuck together. I am redoing most of the plants on our pool deck and just about completed that before the neighbors came over last night. I think I'm going to stick to the quiet uneventful last week before school starts next Monday (can you believe Natedog starts on 10 August and Reese on the 17th?) except for the last weekend. I'd like to do one last fun summer thing and now that we've got all their back to school taken care of we're wide open for something. Hope always loved getting the kids new stuff for school and starting a new schedule (she was the master planner) every year. I cannot tell you how much I'm looking forward to it after going through the worst ever first 7 months of 2009. I can't wait for 2010 but in the meantime will make the best out of what's left for this year.

The nanny starts today in no A/C and will watch the boys two days this week before she takes over after school and maybe a morning or two next week. I did some laundry out of habit this weekend but look forward to not doing that anymore. I know Hope would approve of her and what we're doing now, I think I had her worried for a while there (I started to worry myself too). I was on a conference call for a project last Friday when an engineer that was designing a performance based septic system (this is normally when Hope would start to roll her eyes and talk like the teacher on Charlie Brown --- waa, waa, wawa; waa, waa, wawa) spoke up that I had never met before. He worked at the same company Hope did but only after she left and never met her. He went on for about 2 or 3 minutes about how everyone at that company loved her so much and even though she had been gone for years they still talked about her all the time.

While I really appreciate how much people love and respect Hope it's hard to hear some times, especially when you're not expecting it. Me, I actually had nothing to say to it on a conference call so there was this terribe long awkward pause before I uttered thanks. I wish more people told Hope how they felt when she was alive, so I once again implore you to let people know how you feel about them (especially when it's positive). I love Hope with all my heart but the show and of love and support for her and our family is something that has been indescribable. I know I'm a lucky son-of-a-gun for so many reasons so please no pity for us, love the ones in your life, appreciate that they are even there, try not to take things like your health for granted, and try to find that balance between work and fun. I'm still working on the latter, but in the meantime the boys and I are sweating to everything.

That reminds me that the one thing Hope and I argued about the most was A/C, whether it was in the car or the house. She loved it always on, always making sure there was zero humidity wherever she was at. I always love the fresh air even if it is humid (well not this hot and humid) so we would fight over when to open windows in the house and car. I know I've said this before, but it's the little things you miss the most. Like in Good Will Hunting when Robin Williams talks about his deceased wife and how she farted in bed and he would blame the dog (I've actually got away with this one too before with Shadow and now Mocha). Nobody knows the little things like that but a couple and it's the hardest thing you miss. No matter how late I got to bed I would always say the same thing to Hope when I got in and she would always reach over and touch me. I remember a couple of times when I fell asleep on the couch she would come out at 3 AM and say she reached over and I wasn't there. Unlike Robin Williams in Good Will Hunting I am working on moving on for the kids and I. I know we can do it with a little help from Hope and cold air.


Daddy-O said...

See, i knew there had to be a good reason we had to postpone our visit. I know you wouldn't want me roaming around your house in my underwear due to the A/C not working. Of course I've thought about claiming the A/C is out at our house in order to get Anna to do just that but she hasn't fallen for it yet.

See you guys soon.

Jennifer P said...

I'm so happy to hear you are going to have a nanny to help you! This will definitely take the pressure off and allow you to spend your free time with the boys... instead of trying to find the matching sock that has disappeared from the dryer. :-) Love, Jennifer P