Catching Up With Wonderduck
It's been an awful week.
Out of the past seven days, Friday was probably the best. I slept up to my alarm clock going off, at which point I quickly reset it to give me an additional 45 minutes. I showered, got dressed, then sat at my computer until I was late for work, unwilling to go. Still, it was only going to be a half-day and then it'd be the weekend after I accomplished a couple of things. Buoyed by this optimistic thought, I headed to the Duckmobile.
It took me much too long to get into my car, involving a lot of pain and agonized epithets. The good news is that most of the leg pain has faded... the bad news is that only most of it has. My hip does not appear to be as swell as it used to be, meaning (among other things) that I can't swivel my leg all that well. Also, the act of "lifting" my leg is painful... the muscles in the upper leg contract, and it hurts. A lot. I've figured out that I can hook the handle of my cane under my shoe and lift it like a crane... that doesn't cause the muscles to hurt. Then it's just the "getting the leg into the car" part... and that, my friends, is where the agonized epithets came from. Still, I managed, drove to work, put in four hours there, and then began my errands.
First: a quart of oil into the car's engine. Easily done. Then gas up the car, then pick up my prescriptions. And then... renew my driver's license. Oh, and they had to give me a vision test, which means actually going to the DMV. So I cheated. Instead of going to the main office, which is always busy, I went to an outlying office which is mainly for CDL renewals. Was in and out in under a half-hour. Drove home, had some lunch, took a nap, woke up, did two hours of nothing, went back to bed.
I've come to one realization: I'm not a success. I'm unlikely to ever be what anybody would term a success. And that sucks. I let a single failure, though a big one, guide the rest of my life. What did my story about Friday have to do with this realization? Nothing, it was just a way to pad this post out to something more than 20 words. Gotta entertain the two or three readers I have left after all.
My birthday is Monday. I'll put up my usual birthday post, including the usual rocket test, make the usual jokes, then go to work, come home, stick a candle in some pudding, then call it a day. What would that day be like if I had succeeded that first time I majorly failed?
I don't know. I can't possibly know. It may not have been any different. It may have been totally different, with a wife, kids, maybe grandkids, all gathered to celebrate one of those big milestones in life. Or maybe the cast of some broadway play telling the audience that their lighting designer turned 50 that night, and 500 strangers would sing 'happy birthday' to me. Or maybe it wouldn't be at all... maybe I was accidentally trampled by a circus elephant at the age of 34 in that other existence. I don't know. I can't possibly know. What I do know is what it's going to be now.
Vanilla pudding, in case you're curious.
Posted by: Wonderduck at
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Yeah, I know where you're at, I hit that milestone two years ago. I can even guess at one or two decision points that would have changed everything. But, they didn't go that way, so you make the best of what you've got.
Posted by: Mauser at April 22, 2018 01:03 AM (h8yX6)
Oh, and Happy Birthday. Have TWO Puddings. You deserve it after putting up with all this crap.
Posted by: Mauser at April 22, 2018 01:05 AM (h8yX6)
I can't say that I missed out on any particular kind of dream because I never had one. And that stupid fit of anger which cost me my old job definitely signaled a big, and kind of awful, change in my circumstances.
On the other hand, things have worked out not-terribly in the long run. It was just getting few a half-dozen or so truly ugly years in the meantime which was the trick. Oof.
May there be brighter days on the near horizon, good sir.
Posted by: GreyDuck at April 22, 2018 10:17 AM (h8yX6)
Getting into a car requires a surprising amount of flexibility. During my second AND LAST pregnancy, I suffered from symphysis pubis dysfunction (I described it as "pelvic TMJ"), which meant that any asymmetric movement of my legs - including walking - was painful, ranging from a twinge (if I'd been careful and taken it easy) to agony that left me in literal tears (if I'd overdone it, which with a demanding job and a 4yo was much more common). I had to shuffle along slowly. If I wanted to change directions when walking, I had to come to a stop, slowly shuffle in place until I was facing the new direction, and resume shuffling forward. And getting in a car meant sitting first then slowly moving my legs into the car simultaneously - moving one leg then the other just wasn't possible without significant pain. As for getting in and out of our deep bathtub...oof. Luckily, giving birth (mostly) cleared it up...but that was not a fun few months.
So, I sympathize, and I hope you had a relaxing weekend. Happy birthday!
Posted by: Mrs. Will (Kathryn) at April 23, 2018 04:55 AM (h8yX6)
Like Mauser said, have two puddings - you deserve it.
Posted by: JT at April 23, 2018 07:04 AM (h8yX6)
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