Thursday, April 05, 2007

The roller coaster ride continues

It has been a crazy week.
We started the week by going to the SkillsUSA Kentucky State Competition. I had three students competing this year. I am proud of them all. They were competing in the leadership events of Extemporaneous Writing, Job Interview, and Related Technical Math. All their competitions were on Tuesday. We arrived on Monday afternoon after a bumpy start, which included me having to find/buy a black necktie, (I have about 100 neckties, but couldn't find my only solid black one) and returning to the school to pick up a jacket left by one of the competitors.

The Tuesday competitions were split into morning and afternoon events. I had one in the morning (Job Interview) and the remaining two in the afternoon. The young lady competing in the writing event was out and about with her family in Louisville. the start time was getting close. I called her at noon (her orientation was at 12:30) and she told me they were on their way back to the hotel. By 12:20, they were still not at the hotel. I called and she told me they were lost. Oh No ! I scrambled to open a map on the computer and find out where they were and how to get to the hotel. They finally found us and rushed in at the last second for her to change into her "Official Dress" and get to the contest site. On Thursday, we found out she placed SECOND in the state in that event.

On Tuesday evening, we received word that Tammy's father had passed away. He had a stroke while Dad was in the hospital. He eventually was released and was staying at a nursing home. On Sunday, his brother took him to the hospital and he was treated and released. On Tuesday, he was taken back to the hospital where he passed away. TJ's uncle called us around 6 that evening. I made some calls and had his body picked up by Kerr Brothers in Lexington.

We left for Lexington on Thursday to make the arrangements. The Funeral Home was extremely nice to us. They helped us out all they could. Because of Jim's recent move back to KY, he didn't have many friends here. There will be a short visitation on Friday, followed by a grave side service. Our Pastor will handle the service.

In spite of the tumultuous relationship TJ had with her father, his passing has been very hard on her. I am sure it is coupled and intermingled with the grief she is still adjusting to concerning my fathers passing just four weeks ago.

We returned to Louisville that afternoon for the rest of the contest and ceremonies. As I stated previously, one of the three students finished in the top three of the state. They are all winners for even getting this far.

The final ceremonies were this morning with the awards presentations. After that, we decided to go to Hard Rock Cafe for lunch. We finally made it after going into the wrong place. The door directly under the Hard Rock Cafe sign is not the Hard Rock Cafe. It is The Pub, a British styled bar/restaurant. The HRC was very nice (with prices to match.)

After we left the HRC, we headed toward Lexington. I had missed a call on my phone, so I checked my messages. My Grandmother had finally given up her long battle and passed away this morning at 11:30. I have no idea of the arrangements as of yet. I do know that I am to be a pallbearer at the funeral. I called my children to tell them the news. My son-in-law, Chris made the statement, "When is this going to end?" I responded that NOW would be a good time.

This is all catching up to me, the stress at work over these competitions and projects we are trying to finish, the passing of my father, the passing of Tammy's father, and the struggle and passing of my Granny. I don't think I am handling it very well. I have become snappy lately. I am a lot less tolerant of things that used to not bother me. I am trying to fix that,but am not sure how to do that. I know I need to talk about it, but the words are bottled up inside me. This has not been hard because it is the reporting of facts. That is easy.

One thing I wrote yesterday was: The hardest thing for a poet is the understand that sometimes there are no words to be said.

The anger inside me is building. I don't even know who I am angry with. Unfortunately, those around me are feeling the warmth. I need to find a way to let go of some of this. Scratch that. I need to find a way to let go of all of this. Snappy is not me. Hateful is not me.

I am fortunate to have Tammy, who is worried sick about me. I am fortunate that she will stand beside me. She will tell me to straighten up too. She told me to pick a person to be, Be sweet or be hateful, but pick one. I do love and adore her so. She has been my rock through this. She thinks she is leaning on me during this ordeal with her dad, but we are co-leaning. I would be completely lost without her. We will make it through this the way we make it through everything, Together.

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