Monday, June 30, 2008

Shoes Dropping

I'll tell you what folks, life can be a cruel companion as you get older. In less than a week I've been hit with tough breaks and what seems to be mountains of stress that don't seem fair. But of course crying about it won't help anything because life surely ain't listening to little O me.

My son Perrin is going to need another surgery. The poor little guy has already had his brain operated on and now he needs to have his spinal cord fixed and adjusted because there are some fibrous cords attached to it that shouldn't be there. To me, when I hear someone say they're operating on your spinal cord, that's not good or a slam dunk routine procedure by any means. That's one of the most sensitive and delicate areas of the body where even the slightest slip can cause an impairment for the rest of a patient's life. Yet all things considered, as far as spinal surgery goes, the one Perrin will have is one of the lowest risks. I don't really feel much like going into the specifics of the surgical procedure, but I sure as hell hope this is the last surgery he needs for many many years. I'm not as tough as he is and the stress of this weighs on me heavier and heavier each day.

In addition to my son's problems, my brother Louie is going through a rough patch. After almost 20 years of marriage, he's decided he wants to end his marriage and divorce his wife. I've watched him struggle over the years trying to keep a strong outward face to all of us, but I knew that inside he was suffering with a whole series of different stresses, pains, and emotions. He's finally decided that enough was enough and he told his wife. I don't think she saw this coming and as such she's having a hard time with his decision. Unfortunately it seems her way of dealing with the situation involves a large dose of irrational behavior and mind games that is making an already difficult decision for Louie that much harder to deal with. I don't know of another guy who is more caring and giving than he is and he deserves a chance to find happiness for himself in life. And as much as I want to jump in and protect him from everything, all I can do is stand at his side and watch his back. If I could insulate him from all the BS, I would do it in a heartbeat, but instead I have to settle myself with knowing that as I watch his back, he will get the best advice and insight I can give him from all my years of BS and Drama from having dealt with my real family. I can only hope that it's enough.

In the midst of this storm of "The Other Shoe Dropping" the yearly event that I look forward to the most came and went. I'm talking about the Chicago Comic Con, otherwise known as Wizard World Chicago. It was definitely already marred with the events of my own life distracting me from what I wanted to accomplish when the entire convention seemed to slow down and drag over the news of the passing of Michael Turner. He was only 37 and I think his best work was yet to come, but what you keep hearing over and over again is how wonderful a person he was. I only had a chance to meet him once for like 5 minutes, but he was incredibly nice to me and went out of his way to draw me a sketch when the line I was in was really only for signatures. He made me feel special and made me feel that I was doing him a favor by letting him do this for me. You definitely don't meet people like that every day.

On the other hand I did get to meet my friend Brant Fowler in person for the first time, and that was just too cool. We had a good time and it was fun to put a face to the signature at the bottom of all those emails. I also got a chance to meet Gail Simone and to talk to her a bit. I definitely gushed my fanboy colors while she signed some books for me, but it was enlightening and exciting to talk to her and I would rank those 5 or so short minutes as the highlight of my entire weekend. It would be fantastic to talk to her again one day specifically about writing without a line of people behind me.

For now that's all I really have to add. I think I'm going to lay my little horned head down for the night.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Just a Great Day!

My wife, her mother, and I took the triplets to the Dupage Children's museum today and kept the kids there until they had a meltdown and were overdue for their nap. It was a great day, and Meva was a real trooper to go through with it while she's still recovering from surgery, but it was her idea and she doesn't regret it at all. The kids got to run around and play in water, through balls and blocks around, and beat on things with a stick to make music. It was a fun time for all.

Anticipating thunderstorms that we are predicted to get followed by temperatures in the high 80's and high humidity I decided I needed to go out and mow the lawn while it was still relatively cool and not unbearable. But with the daylight going away I finally finished raking the last pile of grass clippings and put everything away for the storm. My yard is now ready, so I hope it's a good soak!

Tomorrow will be one of the most bizarre and stressful anniversaries Meva and I have yet had. (It's been 8 years now, and we're still going strong). We have two doctor's appointments in the early morning for Perrin, one of which may end up leading to him needing spinal surgery, something that will totally not be something we're looking forward to. Afterwards we are all going swimming with the kids at an indoor waterpark within our fitness center. I can't wait to watch all three of the kids get excited and splash all over. I know it sounds corny, but that alone is such a great present for me to just be able to have a nice family activity. Once the kids are in bed though, Meva's mother is going to watch the kids so we can go out and see a movie. Not sure what one we'll see, but we will get out of the house alone.

Two more days until the Chicago Comic Con. I'm looking forward to a great time and I can hardly wait to get there and see some real cool people. There is the potential that my brother Louie will actually be able to make it for the Sunday session! I'm really stoked about that one as it would be a good time for the two of us to hangout together.

That's all she wrote for today folks. Stay dry.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Back Again

I look at the date and it sure doesn't seem like it's been over a month since I last updated this thing- feels like I just looked away for a second and a whole moth has whizzed past me. I guess that's life with children for you!

Things have been going pretty good. My wife just came back from the hospital after having three elective surgeries. She initially went in to have gastric bypass surgery and since they were in there she had the doctors take out her gallbladder if it needed it (it did) and fix a small hernia she got during pregnancy if it needed it (and it did too). After two nights in the hospital she came home on Friday. Fortunately for her the surgeries were all laproscopic, so she will be able to bounce back quickly. The side effects of the surgeries aside, I think she'll have the hardest time not being able to pick up the kids for 6 weeks.

The kids are doing well over all. They're growing like weeds, talking and learning at such an incredible rate. They'll officially be 2 years old on June 29th! Each day seems to bring new words, behaviors, and understandings for each of them. I don't think there is a proper way to describe what a parent feels watching this happen in their own kids. Perrin is the only one we have any concerns about, but they aren't exactly new concerns, which is good. He may however be needing spinal surgery here soon. We won't know for sure until we talk to his neurosurgeon next week (on our anniversary of all days!) but I imagine they'll want to do it sooner than later if that's what needs to be done. As scary as it sounds, I don't think it's life threatening, and I'm quite certain that he will pull through it exceptionally. He's a tough little shit and unfortunately he's had worse thrown at him and survived. I'll keep everyone posted on this front.

As for me, I've pretty much been focused on the above and the day to day details to make our lives revolve around and through it. I feel I'm in need of some serious "me" time here soon, and as luck would have it next week is the Chicago Comic-Con! It will be a thrilling 3 days of standing in line for autographs and sketches, hunting bargains, and attending panels. I'll hopefully meet up with a few people and just have a fantastic time. One things for sure, I intend to get plenty of pictures of people in costumes.

In other news I've spent much of the little free time I get really into some of the wilderness survival reality shows on cable like Survivorman, Man vs Wild, and The Alaska Experiment. My brother Louie and I have reached a point that we've both signed up to go on the next season of The Alaska Experiment. We both see it as a once in a lifetime experience and it's something we've always talked about doing. I recommend checking the site out a little to find a bit more in-depth knowledge about it if you didn't watch it while it was on. Louie and I both believe that we would not only struggle initially, but we'd get our legs under us and be kicking ass at the end of the show! So, hopefully I'll be hearing back from the show soon!

In anticipation of this experience I have just started a new diet program, to be followed by a new workout program to make sure I am in the absolute best shape I can be in for the show as I know it will be extremely demanding. It's going to be fun having a concrete goal in my head as I go up the StairMaster and lift each weight!

That's it for tonight fans. Stay dry and cool!