Yesterday I spoke about some things that kept me awake at night, mostly commenting on story ideas, and my childhood fears. Today, I’d like to talk about some things that aren’t writing related, and  some things that really worry me as an adult.

One thing that really worries me, and has always done so, is my daughter. From the time she was born, she worried me. From having a  bluish color at birth, to being in intensive care for having a cleft palate, and unable to eat properly. When she was four, her mother and I divorced, and I worried that she wouldn’t raise her properly, due to her own disability. I joined The Fathers Rights movement, and was active for five years in the organization. I returned to court on four separate occasions after that, and numerous returns for two trials. Conflict in the family left me no choice but to ask for primary custody, and when she turned 15, I was successful.


She wasn’t happy about my decision, mainly due to the fact she had a boyfriend there. She stayed until she was 18, and moved back with her mother, despite the fact  the relationship went south anyway a year later.  After another boyfriend, and another mother’s boyfriend, she moved back because of wanting to go to college. She was allegedly assaulted and by her mother’s boyfriend, but due to the inconsistency of the stories, no charges were filed. I convinced her the best thing was to live with me for a while.

Once she was in college, she met a new boy. At first, I liked him, and thought he was the perfect match. After about about a year, he got a little mouthy with me one night and I had to throw him out at 3 in the morning. I really didn’t want to, but I had no choice. He stated he was going to move her out, and that she was sick of my bull, and I told him he needed to respect my rules. To make a long story short, she moved out with him anyway. The first night she was gone, I didn’t sleep a wink .

Once I realized I needed to listen to her needs more, I decided to let sleeping dogs lie, and let her have her way for now. If she’s meant to return back here, she will. She has always been the main focus of my life, next to my new wife, and it’s tough to live without her, but I have done so before, and need to trust that she will make the right decisions, even as a special needs child.

Me and Nancy

Other things that keep me awake, as I’ve stated before, are car problems. Just today my car wouldn’t start again. With the help of a neighbor, we were able to fix it, but I still have fears that it won’t start in the morning, and with the Lewis County Fair coming up, I need it to be reliable.

Another issue is my health, which I can control to some degree. I tell myself over and over that I need to be on a diet plan, get more exercise, and cut back on the soda, but always fail to do it. I lay awake in back pain, and not wanting to take narcotics, try to use Advil or Aleve to deal with it. It works to some degree, but not always enough. I lay awake wondering if I’ll ever work again, or ever get in shape enough to do so. Like so many goals, I just need to deal with the pain, and move on.


And then there’s the world around us, which definitely keeps me awake. Just last night, at 1:30 in the morning, we received a call from a damn telemarketer, believe it or not! There’s the fire siren, two blocks from my house, that goes off whenever there’s a fire. It used to go off according to the fire, 5 times for a 5 alarm, 3 times for a 3 alarm, but that has changed, and it only goes off once, thank God. There’s the trains that whiz by at night, only living two blocks from the tracks, as well. Sounds a little like My Cousin Vinny, doesn’t it?

Then there’s the crap going on in the world around us; ISIS and terrorism, politics, the destruction of American values, the recent tension between the police and the public, and so on. These don’t keep me awake on a personal level, but they do make me appreciate what a nice life I do have, and glad that it hasn’t affected me personally.


It does make me wonder what kind of world my daughter will live in when I’m gone, and if she’ll be inept enough to survive in it. Unless things change in the next few years, I see little future for any of us as a nation. Unless we can get past the hatred of one another, the lack of jobs, the increase of government control, or ISIS themselves, it will be a very dismal world in 20 years.

I’ll do my best as far as can with my own flesh and blood, and hope for the best. With a majority of us on public assistance of some kind, I just hope the funds are there for us to use in 20 years.  The new president needs to focus on changing our current foreign trade agreements because they’re working for everyone but us.


It makes me think back to a simpler time, during the late 60’s, when I was just a young kid without a worry in the world. Inflation was non existent, and a person only had to work one job to support a family. My dad, of course, was the exception, and would never settle for just one job. Maybe things just seemed simpler because I didn’t understand how the world works, and that there is no such thing as a perfect life without worries.