Music Void

    Do you ever feel like a plastic bag? Lol. Sorry about that Katy Perry reference there. It just so happened to be the first lyrics that came to my head. I was just thinking. I haven’t found any new great music to listen to. I’ve been dealing with the same ole music that I’ve been listening to for the past few months. I really need to work on expanding my library. I just don’t know where to begin my search for more good music. Owl City hasn’t written anything in a while, OneRepublic and Imagine Dragons are getting old and Beethoven is dead. I really should invest more time in my passion for new music. Don’t get me wrong, I love my current collection of music. I will never cease to name several as “my favorite songs”. I just feel so tired of the same art I always listen to. It makes me feel as though I’m failing at something. Like I have an obligation to work harder to find and appreciate the amazing art that is out there. If only I had a place where someone understood the art I truly loved and could recommend for me. If only the musical sound that makes me grin and shudder could be heard by another. That’s the funny thing. We all have those moments where a song hits the spot. Where the song in its perfect “sound” seems to synchronize with our passion. The sound that for a moment makes us stop and listen. The sound that makes us happy. Those moments, those feelings, they may not always be exclusive, but we all process them differently. If only someone could see what the intricacies I hear behind certain songs felt like to me. They would truly have the key to my heart. To truly understand a person is something even I fail to comprehend. How would you do it? I imagine spouses have something like this. Not just a love, but an understanding. I truly caring and patient understanding. Something that serves both of them very will. Serves them by seeing the complications of the spouse and standing there when needed. Gosh, how cool would that be. I’m getting side tracked.
     I basically would like to know what to listen to next. After a Twenty One Pilots concert, I wouldn’t mind listening to more things like Guns for Hands, Migraine and Fake You Out. Those songs have some pretty cool sounds. …. I don’t know. … these posts are getting worse. I should try revamping the blog and write about something good.

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Looking forward.

    Have you ever had a desire for something amazing? Have you ever wished you could do something great? Have you ever had a feeling of being truly alive at the thought of pursuing a dream?
    I have always considered being a pilot to be one of the greatest honors in the world. I can remember being rather young and watching a small prop plane fly over our farm. I thought of of the person controlling that machine and stared with wonder at the skill involved. In my eyes a pilot deserves nothing less than admiration. Not only do pilots perform the art of controlling marvelous planes, but they have had to work hard in order to earn that right. I can say with a fair amount of confidence that all pilots, regardless of how well they perform flight, deserve admiration.
    I have always yearned to get my feet off the ground. The higher the cooler. That was the rule in my book I lived by. I have always loved anything that had to do with getting my feet off the ground. I climbed a lot. Trees, ropes, silos, roofs, barns, anything. I climbed everything my parents approved of and everything they didn’t. Sometimes I wonder why I’m not dead. Seeking the adrenaline I would occasionally climb to the lookout window at the peak of our loftless hey barn and hang by one hand off of the small platform mounted there. This was by no means impressive seeing as the height was only about 60′, but I think it helps make my point. I love heights.
    So what does this have to do with piloting? Well aside from the obvious relation of my love for heights and a plane’s purpose to climb heights, I honestly don’t know. I can not say for sure whether or not I would actually enjoy flying a plane. I myself have never ridden in a plane. I don’t even think I’ve ever touched a plane! I’m not scared of getting on a plane. I just never got the chance! Even an airline. I grew up in a family that never really travelled. This in some ways was a blessing and in other ways a sore spot for me. I’ve always been jealous of the people I knew who were flying somewhere. From my dad getting deployed in Spain for 6 months to my Grandparents making trips to Mexico. I have always just wished for an opportunity to flying somewhere. Even if it was just for the ride there and back. I’d give a lot to do just that. But here I am and the highest I have ever been was probably the Willis Tower in Chicago. (Not really accounting for sea level) That was pretty sweet by the way.
    So what am I going to do with these yearnings and dreams and wishes to do something great. I think I’m going to try to make some steps. Maybe take an intro flight soon. That would be awesome. However, I can’t be irrational here. I have to think look into this before I can truly know I need to do it. I’m pretty sensitive to criticism which makes me listen to the dream crushers of this world sometimes a bit too often. This could be problematic for the career.
    Frankly, I have had dreams. Dreams where my wish to achieve them made me feel alive. Dreams of something amazing and dreams of doing something great. But piloting has not yet consumed my dreams. I cannot be sure till I invest some real time with it. I want to be sure that what I love is right for me. I want to understand that what I am feeling is a true passion. Until then, I am not ready. For now, I think I’ll pass on watching the new Captain America.

All I really want in life.

When it all boils down to it. There are very few things I truly desire in life. Now before I go on, I must clarify. This is not to be a list of the items that fallow the statements “It would be wonderful to have that” or “It would be nice to live there”. Although those that list can be important when it comes to motivation, it is still a very secular view of how I tend to perceive success. Financial wealth is a luxury and a bi-product of hard work and dedication. I admire many of the people who were able to climb this ladder to the top because they were inspired to work hard in life. This is not what I value. Wealth in my eyes goes beyond the material standing. Wealth is not strictly what you gain, but also what you gave. When I say I have very few things I desire in life. This is the approach I have. I wish to leave my mark on this world. I wish to make a difference for the better. Allow me to elaborate.

Now I feel that the statement I made above “Wealth is not strictly what you gain, but also what you gave.” this has been said before. I cannot recall who but I dare not take credit. This statement however highlights what I believe it means to be truly successful in life. To succeed with how many lives you have touched. Another (perhaps butchered quote) comes to mind. It requires a bit of an anecdote, so bear with me.

There is a man who is sitting on a log with two children on his lap while a few others stand beside him. This man who we know nothing about is laughing and smiling as he seems to entertain the children all huddled around him. As you observe this pleasant sight, someone says “Now there’s a man who is truly wealthy”.

     I could have swore I read this somewhere but it is 2am and I wish to proceed with my thought rather than properly cite my sources. This small and insignificant seeming man makes an impact on those around him. This man is happy regardless of what happens or what has happened, he is happy to be a father figure to these young children. I feel a good father figure has some of the most incredible wealth imaginable. Bill Gate’s wealth (which I believe was above 52 billion, last I heard) cannot compare to the love and sacrifice a given by good parents. The greatest gift parents can give to their child is life. There is nothing more profound and meaningful than that. I don’t think I will ever deserve what my parents have given me. They have brought me into this world to experience everything. They raised me from birth to the point I left home. They gave everything and now ask for next to nothing. What am I supposed to do with that?

Life is an incredible gift. In a way, to give what you have been given can also be very powerful. That is why I wish to become a father. I have little faith that I will be perfect. The lord knows my parents weren’t perfect, but it was because of them I am here. I’m here to take on everything life has to offer because of them. The shit storms and the beauty. Now that I am a little older and I have experienced a fair amount, I think I’m starting to realize how amazing life can be. I have had some (mild) scarring experiences in my life and I have also met a someone I want to spend the rest of my life with. The fact that life has it’s drastically different contrasts does not taint life. It enhances life. Not to say have been through horrible times, nor am I saying have I escaped them, but things never look quite as good until after you’ve gone through some rough times. Somewhat like a loved one getting in an accident. With one phone call you’ve got your priorities figured out.

We are each only here for a very short time. We’re just one worm of existence in the 4th dimension. Or a point in the 5th. There is very little we can do to effect what happens on our planet, and even less in the universe. Wealth (for me) is not in what you wish to gain through the time you have, but rather, the time you can give. I want to be a dad.

For all those dad’s out there who inspire me: Destin Sandlin, Jon Schmidt, Steven Sharp Nelson, Paul Anderson, Al van der Beek, of course my father, and probably many others I am forgetting. Look out, I’m going to try and join the club.

Christmas break (part 2)

   There was a couple pretty major things that happened on and after Christmas. My sister Emily is now engaged to a gentleman she met here in Marquette and had grown close to. That came as a surprise to most everyone in my family. The proposal was a little awkward (a trend that I am beginning to see is not so uncommon) with a misunderstanding of gifts under the tree. My father had grabbed the small parcel thinking it was a small gift from my mother. She promptly opened it at the same time as another gift was being opened by someone else. This caused a bit of suspense when she gasped and we had to wait for the unobservant people in our crowd to quit talking. It all turned out well though. Drew soon saw his moment and promptly dropped to one nee and proposed. It both warmed my heart and left me slightly unnerved. (not exactly sure why) Especially when my Katrina gave me a look that suggested desire. ….. All in due time, my dear. …. This event left me startled but fairly pleased. Drew is a nice fellow who seems to have a serious interest in taking care of my sister. This is more than I could have asked for, all things considered. Nobody’s perfect, but I have grown more fond of the fellow. Especially since the other major thing that happened over Christmas break.
   It was the day after Christmas. My family had just had Christmas with my Grandparents and they had left to go home. It was only some family members and friends remaining. I was upstairs with my sister Skyping my friend. (Well my sister was actually. They seem to have taken a liking to each other. I was waiting eagerly for Katrina’s return from her trip away earlier that day. Suddenly my sister’s phone rings. I see that it’s Katrina so I answer it. “Hi babe!” I say in a chipper tone. “Peter!” She says to me repeatedly in a breathless terrified voice, “I’ve been in an accident!”. My heart dropped so far and so fast I couldn’t think straight. “What? .. Where are you? Are you hurt? Where are you?” I began speaking fast as I held back the building panic in my chest. “Past Minard Mill” she said sounding as though it was difficult speaking. I was halfway downstairs by now and soon lost reception there. Without thinking I grabbed my phone. Told my mother and those present that Katrina had gotten in an accident then headed for the door. My father jumped to his feet and said he was coming, Drew did the same. The three of us slip on some winter garments and race out the door. I’m dialing up Katrina as I hop in my truck. I hand the phone to my dad and he talks to her as I drive. He’s speaking in a calm and soft tone. My thoughts are racing. I kept thinking of how she sounded when I spoke to her. I didn’t know if she was standing outside the wreck on the phone or pinned in a crumpled car dying. The word terror does not fully express my feelings at that time. “Slow down, we’ll get there” My father says in a calm tone. I realize my mistake and begin to regain my senses while trying to calm myself. We didn’t know where she was at but I knew it had to be close because she was headed back to my house. Suddenly we round a bend and see a car pulled over and two figures standing on the opposite side of the road. There’s a faint glow like headlights coming from down in the ditch. A feeling of slight relief rushes over me as I see that Katrina is visibly unharmed and standing. I drive around and pull. Without thinking I jump out and run to embrace Katrina. She’s crying and holding a water bottle. The gentleman who stopped after seeing headlights in a ditch sees that he is no longer needed and starts to walk away. Someone says thank you and that reminds me to do the same. “Thank you!” I say over Katrina’s shoulder. I wasn’t ready to let go. In that moment I was slowly beginning to realize who I couldn’t live without. I realize now that it wasn’t just Katrina who almost died that day.
   After I am satisfied with my embrace, I guide her to my tailgate to sit while I survey the damage. Dad and Drew are already gathering items that had flown out the windows. One of the items was her Macbook. (Other than a new dent, it seemed to be unharmed) It was a single car accident where she had lost control coming around a left curve. We assume hydroplaning or maybe a layer of thin ice was the cause of it. The back of the car must have started drifting as it came around the bend but soon got caught on the inner edge of the curve as it slid down into the ditch. The right side of the car smacked into the tree blowing out all the windows on that side plus the back and crunching part of the windshield. The car had spun around ending up facing the opposite directions she has come. The mechanics of the car seemed to be fairly unharmed but the damage to the body plus a bend in the frame told us that Stanley (the car’s name) was done. We talked things over and decided that my truck could pull it out. So we hook up my tow strap, turn on the 4 wheel low and crawl it out of the ditch. Stanley was still drivable so my dad drove it home as I fallowed. Feelings of sentiment pass over me as I see the car that was wrecked and yet left my girl nearly unharmed. Katrina walked away with a number of bruises and a bump on the head but nothing of serious consequences. God was most definitely looking out for her little angel that night and I was given a revelation. I did not spend a day away from Katrina till I had to leave for my job back up north, and that was no easy task. That Sunday, as she sang in the church choir, she never sounded more beautiful. Every moment from then on seemed to have more light in it. I don’t want to ever experience something like that again but I should probably thank it for showing me who I truly love.
     There’s not much else that happened over Christmas break. I got to celebrate New Years Eve with Katrina and my parents. Most my family members left to “go have fun” but Katrina and I watched The Princess Bride with my parents. I thoroughly enjoyed that.
I left on the 5th without tears or severe heartache. I know who I love and I think she truly cares about me. That, honestly, is all I need. I don’t know what this new year holds for me, but I’m thinking Katrina will be a big part of it.
   Wish me luck this semester. … I can’t believe I have to retake Calculus.

Here’s a recording of an angel singing after her accident. Pity the quality wasn’t great.

What a wonderful weekend

      Well, I got to come home and it’s been awesome. After the seemingly endless 8 hour drive from upstate, I finally arrived at my humble home. After hanging out with the family members that were there and snuggling with the yorkies that I missed so much, I began to prepare myself for the arrival of my girlfriend who had no idea I was coming home. I had begun planning on making the trip over a month in advance, I just never thought the day would actually get here. My girlfriend was running late to the “movie night” at my family’s house. So we had dinner while we waited. After what felt like ages to me, (but was probably only a little while) she finally arrived. I patently waited quietly in the pantry with the flowers while she was greeted normally and placed the pie she brought on the kitchen counter. Barely containing my excitement, I peeked out the sliver of a crack in the slightly open door and listened to the beautiful voice I had not heard this clearly in 47 days. Finally, my mother said the words I had been waiting for. “Katrina, could you grab the plates out of the pantry? I think they’re on the second shelf.”  I stood their frozen, not knowing what to expect. She opened the door abruptly headed for the second shelf from the bottom. With puzzled and concerned look on her face, I watched as her eyes slowly climb the shape of my dark and mysterious silhouette. The realization of who she was looking at struck her so hard, I thought she might fall backwards. With one hand over her mouth and the other finding the stool that was supposedly nearby she slowly stepped back and eased onto her seat. I emerged from the pantry shivering with excitement. I had finally seen the expression I had been dreaming about since I first day I fantasized the scene. Without baring it any longer, I embraced her. I can’t remember the last time a hug felt that good.
     A lot of other things have happened this weekend including two thanksgiving dinners. I wish I could write more about them tonight but I’m beginning to get tired and I need to be up to go to class with Katrina. I’m hoping to see my favorite math instructor I had when I was attending the local college. It’ll be so nice to see her.
Goodnight.

I’m feeling better.

In my past couple of posts I talked about some struggles I had been experiencing. Not exactly sure why I decided to post such gloomy thoughts. I feel I should address them as I take advantage of this some what more chipper rebound.

In my previous post I believe I talked about depression. I still believe that I was dealing with that to a degree. Less extreme than what might usually be considered diagnosable, but still prevalent enough to effect me. There are things going on in my life that have been taking a toll on me. Some of which have to do with me and some with those I love. My sister has been (and still is) somewhat sick. For the sake of her privacy I believe I am not at liberty to elaborate on the issue further. All I can say is that it has my parents, my siblings and I all very worried. We love her very much.

Because of this problem with my sister, my mother drove the 8 hours up here to see her. This is such a blessing. I love and have missed my mother a lot these past 87 days since I last saw her and the rest of the family. But who’s counting? Although the main purpose was for my mother to come see my sister, I can’t help but think my mom came just in time to really get me out of this hole I was in. I’m feeling a lot better now that she’s here. It’s really nice to see her again.

I’m going to say some prayers for my sister in the mean time. Hopefully everything will turn out well.
Oh one last thing before I go to sleep.      I can’t give all the credit of my brighter mood to my mother. A good portion of the credit belongs to my girlfriend Katrina. Thanks to her I’m feeling much better. I love her very very much.