Been Down a While, But I Dragged my Ass Back Up!

Hey guys, I probably should be in a bad mood today, but I’m trying a whole new approach. I would like to announce that as of about three and a half weeks ago I quit smoking! I am off the patch and no longer addicted to nicotine!! I am feeling much better respiratory wise. I am still stressed and I’ve been eating a little more than I should, but I have been trying to walk.
I don’t know if I mentioned my new dog Max. I don’t think so. He is the cutest little guy. I will post a pic of him. He’s a pup and he won’t get too big. He’s a fox terrier and a chiwawa mix. He’s really obedient and he only ways about four pounds if that. But he’s a sprite little guy. He chases balls and then runs with them in his mouth and hide’s in the shade of our front yard. He is my best bud.
I have’nt posted for a while for several reasons. THe first was my computer crashed and I lost all my old data. But at least I still had all the web passwords saved etc.. so it was not too hard to come back, but you know how it is – you have it the way you like it and then boom – it just crashes. I used to use Macs and I’m trying to learn how to fix PC’s, but it’s harder.
Then my mother-in-law, Barbara, is more of just a mom to me. We call her Ma. She calls me Tater because I lover her fried taters in oil in an old iron skillet. She’s a true Florida cracker and she will tell you if you mess with her you will not be welcome no more at her house! She told me if I ever harmed a hair on her daughter’s head that she would do some stuff to me that I’m sure you can imagine! But I would never. I was raised by a very kind man and that’s something else I will bring up in a minute. But my wife and daughter, Cathy and Ashley, have been going to visit her in the hospital for about the last month. She had an annerism in her thigh and it burts in the operation. We were praying for her and she came through ok. She had a tube in her throat at first and her hands were tied down. She was so miserable that she spit that sucker out! She’s tough as nails. I am so glad that she made it through this whole hospital ordeal. There was a lot more to the story, but you get the point – she came close to leaving us and she’s too young! She’s only in her late 60’s. What’s so great about her is that she has the same name as my mom who passed of ovarian cancer when I was seventeen and she survived ovarian cancer when she was pregnant with my wife. It’s very odd, they used Cobalt to keep it contained and it saved her life. I wish they’d have done the same for my mom! But good news is she get’s out tomorrow – Easter Sunday! What a great blessing. Easter and a saved life. The lord truly does work in mysterious ways.
I also was taking some personal time to read some books and I got some things from my Dad who passed in 2011. God it doesn’t seem like that long ago. Cathy’s Dad passed about 10 years ago now too and I miss him very much too. His name was James Lightfoot – he was a CHerokee indian and he was not very educated but he was very smart. I never even knew until after his death that he had not completed more than a few years of school. I promised him on my death bed that I would take care of his only daughter, his princess, and his grand kids who he loved so much. There nicknames are: Robert or Bobby – but he called him Jumpin’ Jack. And he’s the oldest. And then there’s J.J. – He’s nicknamed JJ Gaborshker. I know it sounds funny – that’s what’s so great about it. And he’s the middle kid. He just got engaged to a wonderful girl from Wisconsin. And then there’s our little girl who is not so little anymore and sometimes I forget – Ashley Lightfoot aka – Spider was her nickname. She had this bouncy thing that we used to put her in and she would giggle like crazy when she was a toddler and so he called her spider because she was bouncing around like one on the ceiling. She’s a country girl too, born and bred in Florida. But they also lived up north where I grew up. But we are all rednecks. We are your basic American working class family. Of course, I tried to be white collar for several years and probably still have a little of both sides in me. I had a great education and that leads me to the next reason for my pause in writing…
I received a package from my mother-in-law with pictures from my childhood, my dad, my family and me and it was just amazing! Then my sister sent me a copy of my dad’s memoirs and I was so overwhelmed that I read it cover to cover and I have an idea for a book. I want to know what you guys think. He wrote the memoirs as “Looking Back” and it was really interesting to get a glimpse into my dad’s childhood in the 30’s and 40’s in the town I grew up in that has not changed much since I was a kid. I thought about adding my experiences as a kid to it and some history and calling it “Looking Back and Paying it Forward” and then a subtitle of “A Glimpse of Small Town America” or something like that and then co-authoring it with my dad’s writing and mine mixed in together. If anyone has any publishing connections let me know. I do too, but I was thinking of self-publishing and I know that a lot of the people that stil live in the town I grew up in – Barrington, Illinois, would be interested in this.
Anyways, back to the subject of Gulf War Illness. I have some new information to share in my next post. I am preparing a new post about a book I got called “Claim Denied” – “How to Appeal a VA Denial of Benefits” and so far what I have read is very helpful and great for resources etc.. and I have been watching a lot of C-Span and it’s amazing what kind of advances have just happened overnight it seems. I can’t believe they actually cured H.I.V. and they also are coming very close to curing certain kinds of cancer! God bless these amazing foundations and the people who help them. There are some amazing philanthropists who just give billions of dollars to research. The names are too many and god be with us all because there are also some very frustrating things going on.
For example – I have not been able to get travel pay from January yet. I called yesterday and they said, “Hang in there – it’s because of the sequestration. We have no idea when it will come.” I cannot afford to drive an hour to the doctor about four or five times a month on average and not be re-imbursed for it. This is the first time I have even asked for it. I never used it in Wisconsin because the clinic was only about fifteen minutes from my home. I didn’t dare ask because I try not to burden the VA with too many expenses, but I just am confused about why they can’t just re-imburse us right away like they used too. Now I hear on the news that they passed a bill or law or something with the EPA regulating gas that will hike up the price even higher.
But, hey, what can I do? I’m just a regular guy with the same problems as most of you. But stay tuned because I hope that in my next posts I can do some good for you guys. For now I am going to try and relax and enjoy the rest of my weekend. I felll this morning trying to open my driveway gate. My dog got out and a neighbor handed him to me over the gate and then I noticed the mail came, went to open the gate and it fell off and me with it. I got bruised and skinned up again but I will live. I’m hurting, and all that but ignoring it. Until next time, friends, I hope that you and yours have a wonderful Easter and god bless America!

3 thoughts on “Been Down a While, But I Dragged my Ass Back Up!”

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