Ishmael's Blog

August 4, 2009

Who Do You Owe?

Filed under: Who Do You Owe? — Ishmael @ 12:10 am

Who do you owe?  Sounds like a deceptively simple question, doesn’t it?  This isn’t about money, what credit card you owe or how much, your mortgage payment or anything like that.  It’s a little deeper.

In my case I actually owe my life to several people, I owe thanks to several people and apologies to a few others and I’ll even go so far as to list them here a little later.

At one point in my life we were having severe issues dealing with one of my sons, so the whole family went to see a Psychologist, not a Psychiatrist.  In the course of talking with him, he asked me if I would be willing to try an experimental program he was developing that involved hypnosis.  I have been fascinated by hypnosis since I was a kid, read all sorts of books, and even went so far when I was a teenager to buy the little coin that when you moved it the pinwheel would move.  It didn’t work very well on one of the neighbor girls, but what the hell, I had to try!   He sat me in a chair, placed a band on my head that had a light on either side that would alternate from one side to the other.  Then he put a tape on that had his voice talking and had music in the background with a strong bass beat.  He started the tape and the lights and left the room.  I don’t know why, but the combination of everything evoked what some would call a strong reaction; I ripped the arm right off of the chair!  I was furious and didn’t know why!  He came running back into the room, stopped the tape and took the band off of my head.  This wasn’t his intended result, he said if I wanted to try it again he would get a stronger chair.

In the course of our talks he asked me to list the men I could call friend.  Now, to me, a friend is more than just someone I meet once in awhile: that is an acquaintance.  A friend is someone you have had experiences with, who you can trust, and who will be there if you need them even if it is inconvenient for them.  And you would do the same.  For more on this, check out Die Another Day, but don’t go there now.  Wait.  At that time I could only list two.  He said that men have a difficult time forming strong relationships with other men, and that most of his patients couldn’t even name one.  He said not only was I lucky, I was blessed!  I thought he was nuts, and told him so.  Looking back I believe he was right.  I think women have an easier time forming relationships with other women because they have a common enemy – men, but that’s just my opinion and I haven’t shared that with my wife.  I may be crazy but I’m not stupid!  He ended up telling us that he wasn’t going to be able to solve the problem we had with our one son, all he could do was help us deal with it.

First and foremost, I owe my wife, my brother and  my children for being there when I needed them.  I met my wife when I was fifteen and we were taking skiing lessons.  She sat next to me on the bus bringing us back from ski lessons only because she was dared to do it by her friends.  See what you get when you accept a dare?  The first time I kissed her my head swam, now today, sometimes it still does.  She makes me a better man, a better person.  If it weren’t for her I probably would have been in jail like my Uncle B. I owe my wife for dragging me to a Marriage Encounter weekend even if I didn’t want to, I just went to stop her nagging me about it 🙂

I owe my brother for looking out for me and helping protect me when I was younger.  Our Dad was an alcoholic and drank between a fifth and a quart of hard liquor a day and smoked unfiltered Camel cigarettes. We could look forward to a daily beating when he got home just because we weren’t exactly little angels and probably deserved it.  I think we were why he drank so much, in point of fact, I’m pretty sure of it.  Check out Snapshots in Time later, if you haven’t already.

I owe the same people apologies: my wife, my brother and my children.  I owe my wife a major apology for making her put up with all of the crap I put her through over the years.  I owe a major apology to my brother, again, check out Snapshots in Time.  A short synopsis for here is he took a major beating for me from our Dad when Dad was drunk, but he wouldn’t tell our Dad that I was the one that did something, not him.  I’ve told him before that I was sorry it happened, and he has said to forget it, but I can’t.  I owe my children big time also.  I swore my children would never see me drunk, and they never did, but one day I realized that I treated them just as badly as my Dad treated me.  Not the physical beatings, but I don’t ever recall telling any of them I loved them when they were younger, for yelling at them for doing things a child should be able to do, and ignoring them when I shouldn’t have.  I try to make amends now by telling them all of the time that I love them. I didn’t even have the excuse that I was drunk, either, which made it all the worse for me.

Now for the others.  When I think of myself, I think of myself as one half of a whole, my wife being the better half.  I think of the people I call friend in the same way, they are halves of a whole unit.  Since this is my Blog, I’m going to list them by the men’s first name.  Two of them are no longer living, but I haven’t forgotten them, to me they are still alive.  I’m going to list them here in alphabetical order by first name only, because they are all important to me, without them I wouldn’t be here:

  • Al and Molly
  • Jerry and Jan
  • Ken and Laura
  • Lee and Selinda
  • Mike and Shirley

Because of you, I am truly blessed.

Who do you owe?
 Who makes your life blessed or cursed?

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