The Story of Bart

Last year, my husband’s uncle died unexpectedly. Sudden heart attack and he was gone, while on vacation in a desert paradise. He hadn’t been at our wedding years before, because he had been cast out of the family. For lying to and betraying them.

The rift didn’t happen when he cast aspersions at them all because they were Catholic and he was now born-again Christian. It wasn’t when he left his newfound religion and his wife and children and declared that he had discovered he was gay. It wasn’t when he began dating a man and became involved in a serious relationship. It wasn’t when he left his lifetime businesses behind and became a flight attendant – a somewhat silly, he thought, dream but one worth pursuing to be true to his soul.

No, the betrayal and lying came about over money. Simple loans that became complicated and tore a family apart for years. Until they were forgiven, and he was back in the Family fold again, to share his now fabulous life with them all.

And then he died, just a few months after reconciliation. So young. So unexpected. But at the very least, the word “after” applied.

He died after living true to himself. After showing the world who he really loved. After following that dream that had little to do with making a living, and a lot to do with just living the dream. And those who loved him, his true family and friends (including the ex-wife, the children, the siblings) who loved him unconditionally – they stayed by his side for the ride of his lifetime.

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No whining now

I feel really guilty for being upset about being overworked, because I know more than anyone how many people are still out of work. Never mind that I’m a policy researcher and I use the change in unemployment over the course of time as one of my contextual-level (that is, relating to the community) variables.

My ex-husband lost his job last September, and has been unemployed, pretty much, ever since. Small jobs here and there, but nothing permanent. He might have to move across the country so he can live with his family, just because he can’t afford to do anything else. My uncle has been unemployed for over a year at a time during this recession. So what the hell am I doing complaining about all the work I have to do? I should be, and am, grateful that someone wants to pay me to do work that I like to do.

Still, all that’s running through my head is that I’m going to work myself into the ground with all of this. And that is definitely not where I want to be. I don’t want to be this workaholic person…and I can’t pretend that it’s worth it for the money. It’s not.

So no more whining. But no more putting myself through this, either.