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Swallowing Your Pride

Robert WoonacottIt is all to common today when it comes to divorce and how both parents end up in court fighting over the house and the kids and sometimes this can really become a problem in most cases.

In most divorces one of the parents is going to be hurt or both of them at the same time. Divorce is not a pretty picture when a family will split up and won’t be living under the same roof anymore, and this can cause a lot of stress and depression. The question we have heard is, does it really have to be that hard? And who do we decide who will get hurt the most.
Most divorces will end up with the father leaving the home and moving to an apartment or another house, and it is in a word starting over. We have to buy new furniture, new dishes and other necessities that is apart of life, and we have to make sure that when the time comes when the children come for their visit that everything is in place and that there is food in the house, but the tension alone can be the thing that destroys the comfortable environment, which leads to questions, and bad mouthing of the other parent in question. Is it then so hard to really think about what is really going on in your life, coming home to an empty home, knowing that your family is somewhere else and you cannot be there, and all the hurt and pain and anger seems to dwindle up inside of you, and over time you forget the person you once were and start to become someone different, and how you perceive yourself reflects on your ability to act as a good parent.
For most men whom I have talked to, sometimes there is a real sense of anger towards the wife, mainly because they are either upset with how things ended, or the fact that the wife is making their life total hell. And this is where a good father should really take notice of their actions when the children are around. During visitation, when it is you and the kids your time should always be spent talking to them and making them feel comfortable, and mom should never be the subject of any conversation unless the children bring up a subject, and even then you should never say anything towards mom at all, and you should build her up in their eyes, unless there is an issue that needs attention. You should never say anything against mom in anyway and mom should never say anything against dad either, this really can affect the children more then what you think.
We all know that every divorce is different and it can really be difficult to get along when you or your spouse are hurt or even angry, but you have to look past those feelings and really look at yourself from your children’s eyes, and how they must feel. That is why I feel that it is important never to argue in front of your children at any time or put the children in-between your disputes, using children as a pawn is the number one no no! that can cause some very bad psychological problems down the road.
Sometimes in life we all have to swallow our pride, and in doing so you can really have a huge impact on your relationship with your children and with your X-spouse. You need to really bite your tong, turn the other cheek and move forward and forget about the past and think about what the future will hold. It isn’t going to be easy, and there are times when you and your X-spouse are going to have your differences, you did that while you were married, so nothing really changes there. The hardest part about swallowing your pride is when the time comes when your spouse might find someone new in their life, and yes you have the right to be concerned and this goes both ways in this relationship.
When bringing someone new into the household where your children are present can really have a lot of impact on the children more then what you also might think, and it is best to move slowly and make very small moves. Our children are very perceptive, and can be very upset when something like this will happen, and this is where the big part of swallowing your pride comes into play. Again you have to put away all your feelings and look towards the future, and first take some time to meet the new person to get to know them just a little and to see what they are all about. What ever you do, do not under no circumstances try to reject the new person, unless you know that this person is going to be trouble for the children, there is a big difference between jealously, and dangerous, so you cannot compare the two. Jealously, is your problem not theirs, and when you think that the children could be in danger, then you have every right to reject this person, but that should be discussed with your spouse one on one. By having this meeting it gives you the opportunity to see the real person, but again you cannot confuse jealously with your true observation, this is your spouse’s choice and not yours, unless you see something out of place.
The next step would be really good for the children, and that is to include your X-spouse in some type of family outing. This builds influence for the children, and if the children see that the new person in their life gets along good with mom or dad, then they will tend to be more comfortable when the new person is around, and lets not forget a lot of smiling and laughing, this too can ease the tension. Once you have done this, then you can move forward.
There is another issue that can be hard at times and when anything that involves the children in anyway it should always be discussed with both of the biological parents first, which doesn’t mean that you cannot include the new member, it just means that if you were to discuss any important issues surrounding your children’s health and academics, which could be very important to your child, then it is good to have all of you discuss this together, but again you need to focus on the children and not your feelings.
Swallowing your pride is one of the hardest things you are ever going to do in your life, and it really can turn into a very healthy relationship with both you and your X-spouse. By working together and setting aside all your differences, can really impact your children’s future, and even then you can really feel good about yourself, and your children will someday respect you for it.​

Helping Others

Throughout my whole life I have always tried to help people as much as I can. There has been times that help that I supply works great, and of course there are times when my help fails, and over the past few months I have really learned a very valuable lesion in life. You cannot help those who won’t help themselves. Really that comment came from Norman Gee, my daughters Grandfather.

hands-300x240I remember one day while working in his garage we were talking about people who need help sometimes and he said to me, “You can’t help anyone that won’t help themselves” man those words dealt a huge impact in my life, and I am pretty sure that over time and over the years I would learn more about the meaning of those words.

It is true though if you think about it. You can’t help anyone that is not ready to be helped, and that means in everyday walk of life. Take a homeless person on the streets, if you give them money, they are going to continue to come back every day, and put their hand out, but if you show them how they can help themselves then that might be something else to think about, how can you help someone that really doesn’t know how to help themselves? Yeah I know that sounds bad, and might not make any sense to many, but the facts are the facts.

You cannot help anyone that doesn’t know how to help themselves and you cannot help anyone that won’t help themselves. Sounds almost the same doesn’t it. What I learned is that you and offer people help and they will take it as long as they do not have to change their life style, but the second you try to change that person’s personality you have already lost unless they are ready for change.

Take for example: Not long ago I took in my daughter’s friend, and she came to me asking for help, she wanted to turn her life around; she wanted to live a better life for her and her daughter. I at first had no idea how I was going to change her life, but I knew from my own experience and by using that as a tool I might be able to help this young lady. It didn’t take me long though to realize after she moved in, that although she said she wanted to make changes in her life, she was not mentally ready, and was not willing to make the changes that were important, and before long within a few weeks, I knew that this arrangement was not going to last long and she ended moving back out as quickly as she moved in.

What did I learn from this, well, I did learn that the phrase: “You cannot help someone that won’t help themselves” is a true statement. I tried, but I could never blame her for not being ready, and over time I do feel that she will grow up and see what it was that I was trying to change, she might not ever see it, but I do know that it was a learning experience for me, and that was I cannot help those who are not ready.

The Grass is Always Greener

greener-grass-300x214They say “the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence” reason why? Because the grass always greener over a septic tank and what is in a septic tank! Nothing but crap! So stay on your side of the fence your grass might not be the greenest but at least you know what is beneath.

The Loss of my Best Friend

I am going to write this right now because it is fresh in my mind and I don’t want to lose this memory. Some people might think that losing an animal is just a part of life and that we should never get that attached. Some people might think that people are crazy to love an animal and they should just get over it.

Robert Woonacott

A Friend that will last a life time.

This morning on October 2, 2012 I lost the best friend a man like me could ever hope for. In 2001 I was involved in a very terrible accident and I suffered post-Traumatic Stress disorder and fell into a great depression. I was being treated by a doctor and over time my life seemed to get more and more lessor to deal with and in 2002 I had tried to commit suicide, and again in early 2003 this is something that my daughter had never known about but I am sure she saw the pain I was in at this time. In the middle of summer in 2003 Elizabeth brought this tiny little black and white kitten to me, and begged me to let her keep him, at first I was not at all ready to have any animal in my life, but after she handed him to me and he started to bit me and attack me, I wanted to keep him too, and first Elizabeth named him Princess because we both thought he was a girl, but then later on we found out in fact he was a boy and he took on the name of Patches.

Patches changed everything in my life, we made me laugh again, and smile, and I started to look forward to waking up when before I dreaded it. I remember him always by my side, and slept with me all the time, ate with me and he would lie on my desk while I worked. Patches was my healing cat, and every day I started to get stronger and stronger and my will to live became more and more apparent. Not a lot of people know this, but Patches saved my life. Even in my darkest moments of my sickness he was there for me, and a friend and a companion. It wasn’t long after he was with me that I started not to need to seek help anymore, I was able to get off my medication, and start to live a normal life, and as much as it is hard to believe, it was Patches that was there the whole time.

Patches was about 9 years old and he gave me the best nine years of a true friend. This morning when I found him lying next to where I normally work, by my side and I looked down and discovered he was gone it seemed that my whole life just was ripped away in just a moment. My boy was gone, and I want my Patches back so much! I was on my knees crying and then picked him up in my arms and just held him and cried out to God why this had to happen to me, why you took my Patches away. I have never in my whole life cared for an animal more then I cared for this guy. My world was shattered and then came the hardest part and that was to let go and to call my daughter Elizabeth, and break the news to her. Again the tears flowed, and my heart was broken into a million pieces. When liz came into the door we both cried together and said our goodbyes, and Jody, Darci, And Elizabeth all went to the Vet, and to make the finial journey with my best friend. While in the car by myself my heart again started breaking down and the memory of him lying on the floor came back into my mind, and I spoke to him.

Patches my friend I want to thank you for everything you had done for me and thanking for being there when I needed you most. I will miss you for the rest of my life and you will be close to me as you were before. I love you Patches, and a friend to a friend, you are my brother, and my friend.

As I close this, I want to say one last thing. I know Patches wouldn’t want me to be sad, and so with that the memory of him will always be with me. I am so glad and thankful for all the memories you gave to me Patches, Mr. Man, Master P. I love you and miss you so much.

My Daughter Elizabeth

As a father I am challenged everyday with new things that I cannot fully understand. I love my baby girl and I can only hope and pray that she will make the right decisions. She will be 18 soon and at this moment in her mind she says that after she is 18 she is going to do whatever she wants, she can leave when she wants, stay out as late as she wants, and just do whatever. It is hard for me to just let go and turn the other way and let this happen.

My heart at this moment is broken and feels like the worst is yet to come.  I know that she is a good person, I know she has great morals, great upbringing so why do I feel so empty and feel that the world is falling down under my feet. Is it possible that maybe there is something that I have forgotten.

Her mother told me, “Rob we can only pray and hope that she will take our advice and our teachings and use them well” I myself feel that just maybe that can happen.

Reopen Your Closet

I find people who reach into the past to dig out your bones in the closets to be more then strange. I don’ t really understand why someone would want to do this unless they want you not to forget what you have done. I can only say that in most cases in my life if there is something that I have put away it doesn’t mean that it is forgotten.

Riding without Protection

bike-300x222As I am driving in my car and it seems no matter where I go there are changes on the roads, and I really do think that is has to be one of the most dangerous pictures I have ever seen in my life time, and that is now motorcycle riders in Michigan don’t have to wear helmets. (Huge Mistake).

I grew up riding dirt bikes and I would have never in a million years thought about getting on a motorcycle without a helmet and that was just the way I was raised. It is for safety and I cannot count how many times my head would have been bashed if it hadn’t been for a helmet. My concern is now that this law has been lifted more and more people are going to die because of this, and already just weeks into this new law I am seeing more and more motorcycle fatalities so this must mean something.

I asked a local motorcycle rider why he chooses to not wear protection, and what he told me was about the un-godliest stupidest answer I have ever heard, and followed by an even more ridiculous answer. “It’s the freedom man” and “Well everyone has to die sometime” WTF kind of answer is that? Are you seriously kidding me, or here is one that I think is even more stupid, “It’s my Choice” I mean this right there goes to show you why those people need helmets, seems to me that their brains are already been bashed enough.

Look I sort of get it, and I know when they feel so passionate about something like and they do what they want, but as I sit there and ride down the streets and every person I see without a helmet I say to myself, as hundreds of others must say, “There goes an organ donor” Or I say, “Another Dumbass” I don’t care what your views or opinions are, it is just that stupid to me! I don’t think they look cool, or it makes them look tough, if you ask me, I see them riding down the street looking like a bunch monkeys testing experimental motorcycles, and what is even worse is I laugh at them. It is just stupid unsafe not only for you but for the people you carry on the backend of the bike.

Last week in Grand Haven I saw one of those idiots with a young boy on the bike with him, and I thought that the young boy needed a helmet, well that is the way I understood the new law, but the father was clearly stupid, riding down the street with no helmet, trying to look the part of a motorcycle gang. You don’t look cool, you are not any tougher then you were with a helmet. I mean come on guys you need to protect yourself and others, why is it so important?

If anyone can give me one good reason, that doesn’t sound like it was created by some drunk, high, non-educated high school dropout who doesn’t have a brain in the world why it is so important to risk your life. I will shut up. But until then I will continue to wear a helmet.

Looking Into The Past

In my life I have always tried to make good with everyone that I come in contact with, and I am a person that never ever tries to do wrong in the eyes of others, however what I have learned that no matter what you do or how you do it you cannot gain every one’s trust mainly because they have their own mind and see things differently than I do.

People have asked me why I am the way I am, and I think it is mostly because I have such a passion for life and for life of other people and their feelings that it just may disrupt my focus on how to get to my place in the world, and the question what is my real place and when I get there will I be happy and commit my life to looking back to what I have done in my past.

My business means the world to me, and I am more out to help people then to make the money that it takes to be successful. I somehow always commit myself to others before I commit myself to who I really am, and that goes without saying. I have traveled and lived a great life and I have no regrets no fear and although I fear the future I am at peace with everything around me. I honor my friend and protect them as long as I can without looking back.

Saying Goodbye

I am moments from leaving home to come to your furneral, and this is something that I am not looking forward to at all because not only do I see my best friends father who has gone on to heaven but I am also seeing my father who took me into his home, who once saved my life and brought me back from certin death. Stan I owe you more then what you may think and am so sorry I was not there for you when you needed me to be. I am going to miss you so much, and today I am going to say my goodbyes, and see you for the last time. I won’t remember you as the person who is laying their, but I will remember your deep voice, and your kindness you show me throughout the years. I will remember you living and free from any pain. I will always remember you as one of my father figures in my life.