Not sure what day #:

Sad and Terrified: I began my adventure home on US Airways, flight 489. The ride was a bumpy one, had to make a brief stop in Phoenix to switch planes. I wish I could have stayed there longer to see my family, that makes me sad. About half way through the flight to PHX I noticed the man next to me, a young, tiny man. He was awkward and very fidgety, he reminded me a lot of the gay brother in Wedding Crashers, “let’s play tummy sticks…” As I examined him (I love people watching), I noticed his skin was almost translucent, I swear I could see detailed vein and bone, gross. As he adjusted his seat, again, I saw a behavior that sickened me, I try not to judge, however. On the back of his head, through his hair on his scalp, were multiple scabs. I saw it happen, he picked and with his head away from me and bouncing back and forth between widow views he nibbled. Self cannibalization, is that a thing? Then I realized what he was, it all added up. The skin, the behavior, it could be only one thing. This guy was a self-mutilating, cannibalizing, day-walking vampire…GROSS, or just an overworked computer programmer that’s not used to sunlight or airplanes, same thing, right?

Happiness and Worry: My niece picked me up from the airport in Denver and we went to a little Irish bar for a birthday drink, $3 Guinness and $4 Car-bombs kept us out pretty late. One of my good friends that I haven’t seen in sometime met us out, it was a fun time and a nice break from the severity of the weekend. We told funny stories and had great laughs. Topics of conversation switched back and forth but pretty much ended up at fun. It was a great time, but I worry about my friends. Many of them are where I was years ago, just trying to figure out were they belong. If I could send a message out to them, it’s,” keep moving forward and I’m always here, if you are a close friend to me, I consider you family, need to talk? Talk.”

Anger and Triumph: The next morning Tabby and I got on the road to Sheridan. A six-hour drive soon turned into twelve. A blow out of our left, rear tire left us stranded on the I-25. Luckily we were close to family and my cousin’s wife came to the rescue. With no spare tire, I had to remove the wheel and go with Brenda to a discount tire to get a new one, in transit Tabby and her Mom decided to get all new tires. So, we had to get the new tire, drive back out to the car, put it on, drive the Tahoe back to the tire shop and wait for them to do the remaining three. Busy ass tire shop, 3 hours later, we were on our way. Initially, I had some trouble getting the lug-nuts to break loose, then I remembered were I was going. I would not be let in the house if I could not get this tire off, country boys don’t fail at these kinds of tasks. I used my entire body weight in the freaking cold. Victory.

Pride: The next day was the funeral. I started the day very sad, on the edge all day. The service was beautiful, a celebration of my sister’s life. I was told that her kids planned the whole thing. The fact that in their darkest hour they took control and let everyone know who was in charge was impressive. I’ve never been so proud of a group of kids. I’ve worried about them most of their lives, that changed this weekend. They are strong and tight, the way a family should be. These events are always sad but great things usually come out of them. A large extended family found each other and old relationships became new again. Beautiful, the way she would have wanted it.

Exhaustion and Willingness: Several emotions coursed through my body and mind this last week, more than listed. I feel like I’ve been gone a month. I’m back home now, back to work. “Keep moving forward,” a text from a good friend. Years ago an event like this would have  halted  me in my tracks and set me back. This is no longer in my DNA, forward. Live, Dream, Work and Achieve. Thanks for listening.