What Christmas Means To Me…

“It’s Christmastime…there’s no need to be afraid….” Band Aid, 1984

Do They Know It’s Christmas? I do, but I wish I didn’t…

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I’ve always been a BIG Christmas guy. Maybe it’s the type of work I used to do, which bred creativity and spirit in the season…or maybe that I loved the camaraderie with family and friends each year and the idea that yes…everyone enjoyed each other’s company and love.

I used to love the company Christmas parties. The past few years, I was asked to get up and say a few words, and I always felt a sense of pride and love for my team as we celebrated another year as friends and colleagues.

I was one of the few who actually enjoyed scheduling Christmas Music. It is an art, and as monotonous as it would seem at times, I always enjoyed the end product, and how it made people feel. I still have an article from Radio & Records Magazine, where I was the FIRST station in the nation to go All-Christmas in 2004. We had TV coverage, and it was an amazing feeling.

In our house, I traditionally played Santa. I would put up the tree, and get it ready for the massive number of decorations that we had acquired. I enjoyed coffee on Christmas morning, and an endless stream of texts, phone calls, and tidings of comfort and joy…

I loved Christmas…

This year…………

I want nothing more than for Christmas to be over and done.  I have dreaded the holidays this year, and can safely say that I have absolutely ZERO Christmas Spirit. If you have any insight as to the circumstances around my world right now, you may understand why. However, as I see people enjoying Christmas Lights, Holiday Parties, and even Christmas Shopping…I am removed from all of that.  I am not participating in Christmas this year.

I have not listened to a single Christmas song, or really sought out any kind of Christmas movies (except Die Hard…which is REQUIRED viewing in Casa De Lance).  A friend turned me on to “White Christmas” with Bing Crosby some time ago, and while it seems to be on ad nauseum…I cannot bring myself to watch it.  I even decided to forego “A Charlie Brown Christmas”, which I would always set an appointment to watch.

Every year, decorating for Christmas was fun, at home and work, and I made it a point to be one of the LAST people to take it down in our home. I hated seeing it go away.  But, this year…not one ornament has been taken out of its box. I did cave in and bring in a small desktop Christmas Tree, just so there would be some symbol of the season, but I can guarantee you…on December 26th, it will go back into storage.

If you know the whole story, you may understand why I feel this way.  I can only hope and pray that next year…I can participate. Not being able to go shopping, or see lights, or share time with family and friends is absolutely killing me. I want Christmas…and New Years…to be in my rear view quickly. I want 2017 to be a faded memory…there was some good in this year, but a lot of false promises and stupid choices. I look past the holidays with hope, and terror. Not knowing…is the worst.

However, to you…I wish you a wonderful and joyous Christmas…and I hope at some point…we can share a cup of cheer some year. Just not this year.

“Merry Christmas, Merry Christmas, but I think I’ll miss this one this year…” The Waitresses-Christmas Wrapping

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My Private Prison

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It’s not easy…never has been for me.  Just when I think I have something wonderful, I have this tendency to virtually ball it up and throw it in the garbage. It’s a pattern that I’ve seen with myself time and time again. And now, I’ve saved the best for last.

I cannot get into too much detail, but the past month and a half has been the worst of my life, because of my actions and reactions. Now, I am not in a position to restart my life as of yet, because of my actions and reactions. Eventually, yes, but my private prison is the space in my mind where I know what I should have, and could have done to avoid all of this. To those I loved, it feels like I have died. One day, the Lance they all knew and loved was there, and the next…he was just a memory, replaced by a tragic figure.

There are those who meant so much more to me than others in my life…so much more. I will always feel regret for how things turned out with them, and only wish them happiness, and offer my apologies for hurting them. My mind…is a private prison that I cannot escape from, and my memories, are just as vivid now as they were 5 weeks ago.

I’ve been through hell in the past month, with no end in sight just yet…and am doing what I can to change the world for myself, so that I never have to face the experiences that I recently endured, again.

As I said, there are those who I will always remember, some much more than others. I will miss the experiences we all shared, the challenges we overcame, and the team and friendship we all enjoyed. Those memories will never fade.

In the meantime, I believe that God has a plan for all of us. His plan for me, was to take me off of a road that has no good destination, and give me pause.  He knew I could not make the right choice, so he placed me in a position where all I could do, was work on bettering myself. Your prayers, are so very appreciated.

I am exceptional. I must keep reminding myself of that, in order to learn from my mistakes. I will no longer settle for second best, and will make sure that my happiness always comes first. If you feel you may be settling…change your course. I could not in time. I almost settled for a life that I would have regretted, and now I have more regret than I ever could have imagined…

Escape the prison in your mind, while you still can. Here are some articles that will help you do just that…

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/alex-pattakos/escaping-your-inner-menta_b_327332.html

https://www.earlytorise.com/5-steps-to-escape-your-mental-prison/

 

The Road Less Traveled…

Well, here we are again.

July 28, 2017. To say that the past few weeks and months have been odd, is an understatement of epic proportion. Soon, I’ll be posting up some journals and thoughts about the world, and what I’ve been through lately. So be sure to watch this space.  I am getting back to blogging, writing, and also therapeutically putting “pen to paper” so to speak.

The road less traveled, is the one I’ve been on recently…through very, very good times…and very, very sad.  Right now, it’s all about the reset button. Starting over, while remembering those I love and have loved, and promising to be a better person for the good of the world, and for myself. I’ve seen so much negativity lately…both in my personal and professional lives.  I wish that people would realize that nothing is so important that it should cloud your world, yet I saw it all the time. I wish nothing but love to those absent friends, that they find peace and happiness somehow. Trust me, if you want to see true negativity…I wish you could have walked in my shoes this past month.

Keep watching this space. I’ll also post reminders up online of new blog entries. Some of these…will absolutely shock you. 🙂

Be good to each other…prayers are powerful, and love like you mean it.

After all, it is what it is…

Everything old is new again…including my material.

I’ve came to a realization earlier today. That was: “Wait….I have a BLOG?????”  yep, I had all but forgotten (again) that I have this outlet for conversation, creativity, and bacon-related topicality.  I will admit that I had fallen into a trap that everything I say must be in 140 characters or less…but then it hit me. I’m a long-winded freak. So, here we are once again. On the precipice of random thought and expression. Those roads…should sometimes stay parallel, and never…ever, cross. If I wanted to share the inspiration that lead me here today. It’s pretty simple. Throwback. Freaking. Thursday. Yes, just trying to be somewhat creative for Throwback Thursday brought me to a review of photos that I had taken and shared over the years…and after a Lougle search of my name (I prefer to believe the events of “Hot Tub Time Machine” actually happened) , I stumbled on some very cute pictures of the Junior Ballances.

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This is how I will always think of my kids.

I had included this image to a blog post from 2008, where I shared the events of a random day with my family in Birmingham, Alabama. The full post, can be found right…………..here. Notice the easy, breezy way that I tell the story of my youngest, and a not-so-obvious mustard gas attack. I have to get back into that groove. So if, you will indulge me, I will once again share the absurdity that is my thought process in blog form.

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Dammit….I said BLOG form, not POG FORM!

It’s good to be back, America. #tbt

Has it been this long?

How wrong is it that it took me GOOGLING MY OWN NAME before I re-discovered this blog. Wow, my own narcissism, is what brought me back.

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Example of above mentioned narcissism...

I can’t deny that the past 7 years (and especially the past 2 1/2) have been interesting, if not downright scary at times. However, I am in a wonderful place, with a great company, and family that are genuinely excited about coming to Florida to live. For that…I am thankful.

I could go on and on about what has happened in my life since I last explored the blogosphere…about the experiences that life has given me, about realizing what is truly important, and how not to take the smallest things for granted. But instead:

NINJA KITTEH!!!!!!

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Little Friskies...or I pluck the dog's eye out like Pai Mei taught me.

It’s good to be back, America…

Holy crap…

Hello, blogosphere…my old friend…

How long has it been? Quite a while, I guess. If you have been a regular follower of this blog (and if you are…why?) you’ll notice I have not posted a new one in quite some time.I wish I had a good reason for this…but I don’t. So……….deal with my laziness.

I’ll have a more detailed, and humorous post in the next day or two, so until then…enjoy this photo of the awesome power of birds.