After two years of relative health and financial ease following my divorce, I’ve hit a wall. My health has fallen to shit and I’m dead-ass broke. I’m battling an infection that sprung from the base of a root canal procedure I had done a year ago and my 10-year-old dog snapped her right Achilles tendon. That’s a $5,000 surgery, which had to be paid for right away. Oh, yeah, less than a year ago, she snapped her left tendon. That’s more than $10,000 in less than a year, in case you’re counting. In the midst of all this, I’ve broken out in a herpes infection, my first in a year or more, because herpes loves stress. I’ve gained nearly 20 pounds in the past couple of months trying to eat away my problems — which, oddly, has not worked. My blood sugar is sky high and my motivation is as low as my checking account balance. My cell phone bill was due a week ago and I’ve lived the past week on $8.
I get paid tomorrow. Damn near every penny is already spent. So I feel like this is the bottom. I sure hope it is, anyway.
That’s what told myself was the amount of time I’ll allow all this to continue. I have six months to dig myself out of this ill-health and financial stress. If at the beginning of May I’m not in a better place on both scores, I’m done. I’ll check myself into a hospital or something and slowly fade away. Or I’ll have found a new path and left this behind. This will either end in Huckleberry Finn or The Raven. I don’t see a lot of middle ground.
And you, dear reader, get to watch the whole thing unfold. Warts and all. It’ll be like reality TV, only for people who walk upright.
I may not write every day. Hell, other than masturbate, there’s never been anything I’ve ever done every single day. So let’s not start off with a lie. I will not write every day. I know there are lots of people who do. I’ve read those blogs. They’re mainly boring as hell to anyone but their immediate families. It’s difficult enough to have an epiphany once a week, let alone every day. And if you’re not going to have one, why am I reading your shit to begin with?
So that’s cleared up. I won’t write every day, but I will make every effort not to bore you. Good enough? Cool.
Is this a diet blog? Fuck no. Is this a white guy with white guy problems stops buying lattes for a month and finances a multi-million dollar home and so you poors should sack up and buy stocks not the weedz and you can be rich too blog? Unlikely.
I’m a 53-year-old white, working class, divorced man with three kids who lives in a two-bedroom condo in a pasty suburb. I live paycheck to paycheck like everyone else and because of two rather large unexpected bills, I’m in danger of falling so far behind I may not be able to catch up.
My health mirrors my financial situation. I have mild diabetes and I am at least 20 pounds overweight. I have a heart blockage which causes me mild exercise-induced angina and slightly elevated blood pressure. Let myself go a little, and I may find myself swimming in the deep end real quick.
So that’s what brings me here. I can feel myself teetering. I could sink real quick. It would, literally, require no effort at all. Or I can at least go down fighting, which is the path I’m choosing. It’s hope, really. Hope brings me here. It’s not the fucking end of the Shawshank Redemption kind of hope, so put away your Kleenex, pansy.
I dunno. Maybe it is. It’s unlike me to hope. But what other way is there to explain it? Why bother writing anything down if I don’t hope to make it out, to create something new, something different, from the scraps of shit I’m holding? Why try?
I had a dream last night that I found a baby. He was alone, naked and reasonably happy. He needed to be changed, so I put a new diaper on him. He never made a sound, just laid there taking in the world and trying to decipher it, decode it, make sense of it. I didn’t find him a burden. I wasn’t scared. There was a baby who needed a new diaper and so I put one on, simple as that. I don’t remember what happened after that. I think I just went on my way.
Any dream interpreter will tell you that a dream about a baby is a dream about a beginning. I guess this, then, this is my shitty baby that needed a new diaper. What fun.