To the future Mrs. Tony Jenkins:
Christmas 2014 is here..and once again you are not. This year I was sick, laying in bed or on the couch for 4 days watching 8 movies, 1 season of The Unit, and playing video games waiting for my strength to creep back.
I didn’t go to my family’s house because of my flu..I didn’t want them to get what I had. So instead, I stayed on the couch and didn’t open one gift of my own, didn’t get to share the holiday with anyone, and it was a bit lonely. I had a lot of ‘1st World Problems” going on inside my head…a lot that was not there. But, instead of sulking, moping, doping….I did something different.
Instead of focusing on what I didn’t have, who I wasn’t with, I looked at facebook and watched as my friends and their children opened their presents…and posted them…and it brought me joy to see my friends happy with their new fishing rods, motors, jackets, and presents of all sorts. I watched videos of friends kids laughing and playing and showing off the things put together for them. I looked at the joy in the kids faces, in my old friends faces…I shared the holiday with them, even if they didn’t know it. It was a good day…and you missed it.
Instead of getting to buy you a fun gift, a secret adventure that you could boast to your friends about, you were once again, not here.
After years of cleaning my act up, learning how to take care of myself, praying endlessly for you, I had an epiphany. It’s your fault.
It’s your fault that you’re not here.
Your fault in not accepting my invitations to go out.
Your fault that we’re not together.
You know that gift that I was going to buy for you this year? Guess what, it’s become a future motorcycle…let me rephrase that…ANOTHER future motorcycle. That will make for 2. You’ll probably not like my motorcycles, but guess what? They’re grandfathered in now and I do not have to get rid of them…kind of a man’s prenup code. You see if I have it before you get here, I get to keep it. The way I see it, the first motorcycle was probably my “fault” because it could have been a phase I was going through or me following the fad that I would have outgrown, but you not showing up this year solidifies that first and makes the second essential.
Also from now on, all of my shortcomings as a home keeper, and all of my social skills have diminishing return on your investment of my domestication. For every year that you do not show, I get 1 more dangerous sport, 3 video games, 1 week of total non-bathing, and one month of guilt free facial hair. This diminishing return gains momentum with each year, from this point forward, until year 12 when I no longer need to bath, shave, and speak in full sentences. Primal grunting and the word “fine” will become perfectly acceptable for communication.
From today forward I will make more messes, I will break more bones, I will stay up later, live harder, sleep less, I will develop more bad habits, learn new ways to cuss….
I will ride harder, I will fight dirtier, I will ride shotgun on dangerous missions where angels fear to tread…all this because I simply can.
I will collect tattoos, scars, and tales.
I will run to the ends of the earth and back to fill my life with incredible stories that you will hate to hear because you will question their plausibility as well as the shear stupidity.
Mark Twain once said, “We must endeavor to live so that when it comes time for us to die, even the undertaker is sorry”.
From this point forward, I’m not waiting on you.
Not one damn bit.
From this point forward, you’re going to have to catch up.