On to World 2

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Prologue: When my wife and I asked the kids what they wanted this past Christmas, our older son said, “A video game that I can play with my brother.”  We did some research and found that New Super Mario Bros Wii was very highly recommended.  I apologize in advance if I’m telling you things you already know, but what appealed to us the most is that it’s a two (or three or four) player co-op game instead of a two (or three or four) player competitive game.  Having never played any Mario games on Nintendo 64 or GameCube, I was (and still am) impressed by how far the franchise has come since Super Mario World on Super Nintendo.  Both boys caught on very quickly to the fact that I was saying, “You’ve got to be kidding me” during each new level we tried.

Long story short, our older son and I finished off World 1.  I don’t know if I want to say that I’m proud of him (something about saying that I’m proud of my five and a half year old son who’s good at video games seems wrong to me), but I do appreciate his “sticktoitiveness” and how excited he was.  Before they went to bed, both boys told me, “When Mommy gets home, can you please tell her we beat World 1 and got World 2?”

Epilogue: On to World 2.

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Timeline

Tonight feels like as good a night as any to give a brief rundown of events of the last several years that have led me to where I am today – a timeline of sorts.

On Monday, November 9, 2009, I was fired from the job I had held for the past five years.  On Saturday, November 14, 2009, I got married to the love of my life.  I don’t know if “it was the best of times, it was the worst of times” applies here, but I don’t think it’s entirely inaccurate to say that one of the worst weeks of my life was also one of the best weeks of my life.

On Friday, April 1, 2010, I was diagnosed with testicular cancer.  On Wednesday, July 7, 2010, I was pronounced in remission.  Neither of the last two statements make me special, but being diagnosed with cancer was one of the best things to ever happen to me and one of the worst things to ever happen to me.  The treatment plan for me was pretty simple and straightforward – scans, surgery, more scans, nine weeks of blood draws and chemotherapy, more scans.  I chose to view it as being sidetracked for a couple of months.  Some (but not all) people’s view of me changed forever, for whatever reason.  I don’t know if I would say that they expected less of me, but they certainly implied that I needed help to do things I used to be able to do on my own.  I certainly wasn’t one hundred percent during that time, but I wasn’t an invalid, either.  I find it interesting that they chose to focus on the “cancer” part of “cancer survivor” instead of the “survivor” part.

On Monday, August 30, 2010, our first son was born.  On Thursday, January 26, 2012, our second son was born.  My wife and I agreed that the best way to find out that chemotherapy hadn’t rendered me sterile was to find out that she was pregnant again.  Someday, when our boys are older, I’ll explain to them what it means to be fired, to be a cancer survivor, and many other thing.  In the meantime, I’ll focus on being the best dad and husband that I can be.

Off the Grid

My mother-in-law and brother-in-law have been staying at the house with us since Friday, so I have been more or less off the grid as their host.  I do think you will appreciate the following exchange I had with our older son one morning:

“Dad, can we buy an xray machine?”
“Those cost a ton of money, Paul.  We’d probably need to sell the house to buy one.”
“Ok, let’s do that.”
“Then where would we live?”
“At the cabin.”

I’m glad he’s thought this one through.

Hello

First things first.  Whatever this blog turns into – a daily, weekly, monthly, yearly, or one time thing; a bright idea or a fool’s errand – there are some people who deserve my thanks.  My wife of six years and counting suggested a few years ago that I write some memoirs of my life at home with the kids (4, 5, and 13).  I told her I didn’t have time to do that, but if I did, I knew what I would title them – Man on the Run.  Of course, with a movie, a studio album, and a song of the same name existing, I figured I would run into all sorts of copyright laws.  I thought to myself, “What would anyone who knows me well at all recognize as significant things in my life?  Being a dad?  New flavors of Mountain Dew being introduced?”  Plus, I think Mtn Dew Dad has a nice ring to it.

The aforementioned kids have been, are, and will continue to (I presume) provide the bulk of my material.  Not that they are any less busy than they were a few years ago, but they are a bit more self sufficient.  I feel like I have more opportunity to reflect on what they do instead of just react to what they do, if that makes sense.

This blog is not affiliated with or endorsed in any way by Pepsi or Mountain Dew and its content and views are solely its own.  That being said, Mountain Dew will find its way into many of my posts.

Last but not least, WordPress has given me a platform for publishing my content and views.  In the interest of full disclosure, I am not in possession of any literary degree, so I make no promise of style over substance.  If anything, I will promise substance over style.

Here’s hoping a combination of kids, caffeine, and a career proves to be as entertaining as I believe it will be.  Until tomorrow…or the next day…or next week…