The Opportunity Costs of Life

Every action we take in life has a cost.  The currency we pay in may be time, money, health, sanity or relationships.  Most people never think about this until they get a little older in life and reflect back on past years. They come to the understanding that all of their actions have put them in their current situation; whether it’s fortuitous or tumultuous.

Every choice we make takes away from another opportunity that could have been.  Sometimes the costs are so great that looking back on them drums up great pain in our souls.  For the intelligent, wise, or possibly just lucky; their opportunity costs have been low. They have lived their lives in a very fruitful manner where the gains have exceeded their losses.

I struggle with judging the costs of my actions and how they affected my life.  At a cursory glance I immediately think I paid a heavy price.  I have made decisions with my life that have been very costly to my health and well-being.  My lifestyle, career choices and rampant drug use and abuse throughout much of my life has had a profound impact on my present situation.

I’m fortunate to be as healthy as I am.  I’ve done a massive amount of damage to my body and been lucky enough to avoid extremely serious issues.  I believe these were bumps in the road that God or the universe has thrown in my way to wake me up and correct the path I was on.

Five to six years ago I was using coke and painkillers very heavily.  I also drank and used steroids.  During this time I contracted a virus that attacked my heart and I was hospitalized.

After a couple days at the hospital I was diagnosed with a viral cardiomyopathy.  The doctors were uncertain whether my heart would get back to normal, stay the same or get worse.  They covered all the possible options with their amazingly vague prognosis.

Over the next two years my heart recovered.  I was on ACE inhibitors and beta blockers to control my blood pressure and hopefully prevent my heart from further damage.  I never stopped using opiates, even while in the hospital.  Two weeks out of the hospital I was back in the gym. Three to Four months after that I was back on a low dose of steroids.  A couple weeks after starting back on steroids I was using coke again.

My bill for that life experience was rather steep.  However, without batting an eye, I continued on the road I was on.  They say pain is the cornerstone of growth and change.   For much of my life the pain had to become unbearable for me to make changes.

Less than a year after my cardiomyopathy I ended up in rehab for the second time in my life.  I was clean and sober for about 6 months.  I met a ton of good people in the program.  I learned valuable tools and truths about life that I will never forget.

Unfortunately, I didn’t always put these tools to use.  Once I stopped going to meetings I was back to using pretty quickly.   Then, for some reason I just decided I couldn’t use coke anymore.  I hated it and what it had done to my life.  I just got to a point where enough was enough and I couldn’t stand the pain any longer.  On the 4th of July in 2012 I quit using cocaine and have not used it to this day.

I continued to use low doses of steroids until the summer of 2013, when I was 33.  I always looked at steroids as being rather benign, unless you use absurd physiological doses.  Even after what I am about to tell you, I still have that opinion of testosterone in small dosages.

I had just gotten back together with my ex girlfriend.  We spent the majority of the summer at her parent’s beach house.  I wasn’t using pain killers or coke.   I was in love with the woman I thought I would marry.  I was preparing to quit my illegitimate business ventures and I had plenty of money. Life was pretty damn great.

Then I started having some pain in the lower right side of my abdomen.  My doctor thought it could be a hernia so he sent me for CT scan.   I was at my ex’s beach house eating dinner with her when I received a life changing phone call from my doctor.  He told me the scan showed I had two pool ball size lesions on my liver that were more than likely Hepatocellular Carcinomas (Liver cancer).

I went through a gamut of tests over the next couple of weeks.  Including several liver biopsies, which were possibly the most physically painful experiences of my life.  When all the smoke cleared I had gotten lucky again.  The lesions turned out to be Hepatic Adenomas.  The doctors diagnosed my steroid use as the cause for these lesions.

I begrudgingly stopped using steroids when I first got the news that it could be cancer. I lost a good deal of my size, my dick didn’t work right for 6 months, and mentally I was a wreck.  I started using painkillers again during this time and ultimately my actions from that point on cost me my relationship.

Looking back on how I handled these changes I feel very foolish and ungrateful.  I had just been giving a new chance at life being told I did NOT have liver cancer.  I had the opportunity to move to a new area with my girlfriend and her son and start a new life.  I had given up my previous life, without having to go to jail.  I had saved up more than enough money to live off of for several years. But I couldn’t see past the pain of the change.

I decided to choose being stuck.  I was sulking and trying to bring back the past instead of looking towards the future and being open about the possibilities.  I lost two people I loved and a future I hoped for in this process.  It was a heavy price I had to pay for the choices I made.

It’s easy for me to see what my actions have cost me.  It’s much more difficult for me express gratitude for all of the lessons life has taught me that I never wanted to learn.  I have lived an awful lot in my 35 years.  I have done and seen things the majority of people I know have not. I have the ability to enjoy my life with many comforts that I take for granted.  I am able to learn, grow and start over with a new found self.  I have friends and family that love me despite my actions.

My life has lead me to this point where I’m comfortable enough with myself to share my experiences.  I have faith that my words may resonate with others and help them choose life.  That I can create a better world for myself and those around me.

If I had never have paid these opportunity costs in pain, I wouldn’t be where I am today.  I may never have felt this sense of purpose in my life.  I have so much good surrounding me.  Good I may never have discovered had I not made decisions that took me to a point that I had no choice but to make a change.

Life changes.  The reality is the only way to be comfortable is to accept change.  Stop fighting the old and looking for comfort.  Nothing ever stays the same.  People go in and out of our lives.  We change jobs.  Our looks change.  Feelings change.  The only constant in life is change.  Embrace the change.

And the Truth Shall Kick Your Ass

“Stop Brett!”  Those two words coming out her mouth broke my heart.  Again.  That familiar, empty, nauseous feeling rushed to the pit of my stomach.  My head felt like I had vertigo   My emotions were going a million miles a minute.  I wanted to rage and hurt someone.  But I didn’t.

My ex and I had broken up months before that moment.  I had moved out of the house we were living in together in April, six months prior.  During that summer we tried to make it work again between us.  But her feelings had already changed.  I think she was trying to make herself fall back in love with me.  Mainly because of comfort and the bond her son and I shared.  If I am being totally honest, those were the reasons I was trying too.  I loved her, but I knew it wasn’t right.

At the end of the summer she had a drastic “change of heart.”  She told me she couldn’t do it anymore.  The drastic change of heart was she met someone else.  She lied and gave me another excuse of why it was over, but that was the truth.

After the summer I still spent time with her son every other weekend.  This meant I was still seeing her as well.  We had agreed I would still stay in his life because he and I loved each other.  Looking back it wasn’t the right thing to do for anyone involved.

I saw him every other Sunday.  We would spend the day playing, going to Chuck E Cheese and building Legos.  I looked forward to those days from the moment I left until the moment I saw him again.  I also selfishly looked forward to seeing her.

The situation progressed to me spending  the weekend at their house.  At first I slept on the couch, it was all about the time he and I spent together.  That soon turned into the three of us doing things together as a family.  Then her and I started sleeping in the same bed and being intimate again.

I would ask her if she was seeing anyone.  I wanted to know the truth.  I didn’t want to continue being intimate if she was.  She would always say no.  She even went as far as to swear on her son’s life she was being truthful.  But I knew she was lying.

I started playing detective.  She had gotten back on birth control, there was a guys sweatshirt at the house one day, she was very nervous anytime I was near her phone.  There was so much writing on the wall.  But I chose to go head first back into this anyway.  I set myself up to get hurt.  I almost can’t even blame her because I allowed it to happen.

After she slipped up calling me the wrong name, I stayed the rest of the weekend to spend time with her son.  I just couldn’t leave him at that point.  Her and I talked and she answered some of my questions with partial truths.

Before I left I said my goodbye to her son as I put him to sleep.  It was one of the hardest things I have ever done.  I told her this was the last time I would see her.  She texted me a couple times on my drive home, but I couldn’t respond.

My birthday was that next weekend.  She texted me happy birthday and sent me a picture of her son holding a card he made for me.  I couldn’t help but cry.

I had hoped she would call me to show she felt remorse for her actions.  I wanted to see if she would try to prove that she cared about me like she had claimed.  But that never occurred.

I wanted to talk to her and hear her admit the truth to all of my questions.  I felt that I needed to know so I could have closure.  But I had my closure.

The more I thought about it I knew I couldn’t talk to her.  I needed space more than I needed the truth.  The truth didn’t really matter.  I knew enough that I could no longer have her as a part of my life.

Sometimes seeking the truth in delicate situations isn’t the best option.  Hearing her confess to all the things she had done wouldn’t have been the freeing experience I had hoped for.  It would have only served to damage me further and I would have brought that pain upon myself.  I accepted what I knew and moved forward with my life.  That was the gift of closure I gave myself.

Holy Shit I Talk Too Much


Sometimes I can’t shut the fuck up.  I get so excited about the words that are about to come out of my mouth that I can’t hold onto them any longer.  I just blurt them out.  Sometimes in the middle of what someone else is saying.   It’s rude and inconsiderate, I realize that.  However, sometimes I can’t help myself.

My story telling skills can be maddening.  Brevity is not one of my strong points.  It’s something I struggle with in my writing as well.  I feel like every little nuance and detail is germane to the story and I have to explain them thoroughly.  But most people would be happier with the cliff notes.

Diarrhea of the mouth has actually caused me talk my way out of getting laid.  Sometimes I oversell way too hard.  I have to get another story in and keep pushing the envelope of what I can get away with a woman.  I feel its part of my charm.  I’ve had numerous women beg me not to talk so much.  They have literally told me I would be better off  sitting there and looking pretty.

I have a tendency to want to dominate my interactions with others.  I always have such amazing and interesting content to add to every conversation.  At least I think so.  The reality is I need to shut up and listen more often than not.

I can learn so much more by listening to others and what they have to  offer.  When I’m in a conversation and I hear something I feel I know a lot about, I tend to interject before they finish to make myself seem more intelligent or witty.

In the past I have been very opinionated and judgmental.  I have been trying to keep those opinions to myself lately.  Unless someone really asks for it.  Then they will get an earful they may not have planned for.

I’m the type of person who is rarely at a lack of words when it comes to dishing out advice.  I’ll give you more than you ever imagined.  I don’t realize that so often people just need to vent and get it all out.  They aren’t looking for my thoughts on the issue.  They only want me to listen.  I mean really listen.  Not just keep quiet long enough for them to finish their sentence just so I can speak again.

Listening is the most important skill for building all relationships.  People want to know they are being heard and understood.  It’s the basis for Sales 101.  Understanding the customers needs.  Any idiot can ramble on, talking to hear themselves speak.

Truly listening and appreciating the wants and needs of the person you are interacting with is priceless.  The more I work on this skill, the more I create fruitful and long lasting relationships in all aspects of my life.  Which is a key to creating a fulfilling, meaningful existence.

Why Everyone Should Experience College


Whatever happened to “go to school and get an education?”  Lately I hear so many people trying to influence kids NOT to go to college.  When I was growing up it was the complete opposite. The arguments I hear most often for not going to college:

  1. Huge Student loans
  2. Anything you learn in college you can learn on your own
  3. Opportunity cost of time spent in college vs. time spent working
  4. Kids are coming out of college struggling to find jobs because they majored in fields that are outdated or no longer exist

I’ve been in conversations where I’ve said I could’ve used the five  years I spent in school better by learning and building a business on my own.  But that’s not reality, at least for me.  I’m thankful I went to college.  If I could go back and change my decision I wouldn’t.  I’m not saying I learned a whole lot of useful information in the classroom that bettered my life, but I will say that the experience was invaluable.

I’m not going to argue the financial, or timeline, benefits or detriments of going to college.  I don’t have the facts and figure to write and intelligent and well thought out post based on those topics.  More so, I don’t care to argue those points.  I find them to be boring.  My argument is based solely on the value of my life experience in college.

College is this amazing experiment.  You take all these different people and jam them together in this social/educational setting and see what happens.  Undoubtedly a cluster fuck ensues.  People lose themselves, find themselves, lose their minds, create amazing relationships and end up becoming someone very different than who they started out as.

I’ve heard people say anything you learn in college you can learn on your own.  I agree with this to an extent.  But The fact is most people won’t learn on there own.  They want to be taught.  Its easier to have someone teach you.  People love the easy way.

The majority of people don’t have the drive or know-how to effectively teach themselves new ideas.  Having a teacher helps validate what you have learned.  It’s a structure we have become accustomed to as a culture.  I’m not saying its right or wrong I’m just stating how I see it.

College was five of the best years of my life.  I didn’t always realize it then, but my life was amazing.  I floated through college.  It was a joke for the most part.  I even tried to fail a class during my MBA so I didn’t have to leave.  I wasn’t ready to move on.  Life was too good.

There are lessons you learn in college that I know I would have never learned anywhere else.  I’m not talk about physics or accounting.  I mean amazing and irreplaceable life lessons.  Had I not gone to college I may have never: gotten stabbed, contracted the clap, gotten my car stolen,  gone to terrible frat parties, been known as Naked Guy or met the incredible people who have impacted my life many years in the future.

I learned how to act in uncomfortable social situations.  There’s not much worse than being stuck in a smoldering hot basement with 200 co-eds rubbing sweaty elbows, drinking warm beer and trying to act cool in front of girls.

I learned how to not do wash for weeks on end and still have “clean” clothes.  I learned how to live with the craziest menagerie of people and co-exist.  I learned that with $40 bucks in your pocket you are set for the weekend.  I learned that people love really shitty music, like Phish.

I learned how to sneak 30 packs and beer balls into a dorm at a dry campus.  I learned how much fun $12 worth of shitty alcohol could buy for me and a couple friends.  I learned what the freshman 15 was (The 15 lbs. people tend to gain their first year of college).

I learned how to play Rugby.  I learned Grain makes delicious jungle juice, but shooting it is asking to go to the hospital.  I learned to always wear flip flops into any public shower.  I learned people can actually live off Ramen Noodles and Spam.  I learned Kool Aid and purple drink are mainly sugar.  I learned its incredibly to tell someone to ‘go fuck themselves and their knife’ before you are about to get into a fight with them.  More than likely you will end up getting stabbed, at least in my case.

I wouldn’t give up my college experience for anything.  The actual education I received in the classroom is pretty much worthless.  But my memories are priceless.

I’m not saying everyone needs to graduate college.  But I am saying everyone should go for the experience


KRS’s Drunken Fun Ride into The Cornfield


My 1989 Chevy Beretta screeched out of the McDonald’s parking lot as the flashing lights followed behind me.  I was 16.  I had just received my drivers license 4 months prior.  I was extremely intoxicated; speeding down side streets in my little suburban town trying to outrun the police chasing me.  I had no seat belt on, but the party ball sitting shotgun was buckled up safely.

I was speeding recklessly.  But I obeyed all other traffic laws.  I stopped at stop signs.   I used my turn signals.  Not the best plan to elude police.

I approached a bend in the road and lost control of my car.  I ended up driving straight into a cornfield.  My car stalled and died.  Luckily no one was injured.

I started to exit my car and the police were on me immediately.  I was struck in the face with a flashlight and slammed to the ground.  The police claimed I was resisting arrest.  At 16 I wasn’t a very menacing looking character.   I was 5’9, 150 lbs and hammer-time drunk.  Drink Beer

When the police searched my car they found some odd items inside.  First, and most obvious was the party ball they found sitting shotgun with a seat belt around it.  Then they found a marine K-bar knife under the passenger seat and pair of nunchucks under the driver side seat.

When they got me to the police station my face was bloody and bruised from the flashlight.  I had brush burns from my chest up to my face and onto my ears from when the police had drug me across the ground.  I cursed out all of the officers using every bit of profanity I knew.

I made a lot of worthless threats about how my father was going to get me out of trouble.  He had zero pull.  I’m not sure why I would even say something like that.  I guess being extremely drunk and having been hit in the head with a flashlight could have had something to do with it.

The police antagonized me and got me to act out more.  I asked them to let me out of the handcuffs so I could wipe the blood off my face, but they refused.  So I spit the blood off my face towards them.

When the police finally drew my blood I had a blood alcohol level of .27.  Almost 3 times the legal limit (Back then it was .10 in Pennsylvania).  I was charged with DUI, eluding police and numerous other offenses.  They wanted to keep me overnight but I was released to my father.

After my father picked me up from the police station he did something very odd.  He took me to a diner to eat at around 2:30-3 in the morning.  We met his degenerate friends who liked to hang out at there all night.  I was bloody, bruised and drunk; and he thought it would be a good idea to go meet his friends.

The next morning I woke up with my face sticking to the pillow.  The blood from my cuts dried to the pillowcase causing me to be glued to it.  I was praying the previous nights events were just a dream.  But they were not!  Facing my family and friends was extremely embarrassing.  Especially showing up to high school with bruises all over my face and everyone knowing what had happened.

In the end I was convicted of DUI, eluding police and resisting arrest.  There were about 12-13 other charges that were dropped. I lost my license for 18 months and was on probation until I graduated high school.  Part of my probation stipulated that I had to attend outpatient counseling for alcoholism.  My parents sold my car to pay for my fines and lawyers fees.

Not driving for the remainder of high school really put a damper on my social life.  I had to constantly bum rides anywhere I wanted to go.  High school wasn’t a shining moment in my life.  My poor choices made it even worse.



Getting High and Swimming With Sharks

In hindsight getting high and swimming with sharks may not have been the best idea.  I was bored and by myself while visiting Adelaide, Australia.  So I decided to get high and go to SeaWorld for the day.  It seemed like an exciting trip and I always enjoyed aquariums, especially stoned.

I walked around marveling at the aquatic life and taking pictures.  The shark tanks were the main attraction for me.   I noticed they had a sign posted by the tanks that said “swim with the sharks.” I quickly signed up to for the next available time and paid my fees and was ready for my adventure.  I had never swam in a shark tank so I was pretty stoked to do it.

The SeaWorld employees took a group of us back inside the inner workings of the aquarium.  They gave us our scuba gear and went over the types of sharks and sea life we would be swimming with.  The staff went over the ground rules of we could and couldn’t do in while in the tank with the sharks.  There weren’t too many rules to follow to be honest.  The main rule, and most obvious, was that touching the sea life was strictly prohibited.

None of the sharks in the tank were considered aggressive.  Which I found unfortunate at the time.  For some reason knowing that took away some of the excitement from the experience.  I’m not sure why the thought of possibly getting eaten was more appealing.  Probably because I was high and having some odd delusions of grandeur of fighting off a shark attack.

Once I got into the tank and swam around with these creatures it was a pretty amazing experience.  Having these sharks and other large fish swimming past me just inches from my grasp.  It was amazing to see them breezing through the water with ease as I struggled to get around.

After fifteen minutes of swimming around I noticed the front side of the tank had numerous people congregating at it.  People were watching all of us swimming with the sharks and taking pictures.  I swam up to the the people watching and posed a bit so they could take some pictures.  I was a bit of an attention whore.

I saw the flashes going off from the cameras of people snapping pictures for the photo albums.  I saw this as perfect opportunity for me to have some fun.  I was going to give them a memory they could laugh about and cherish for years.

A Leopard Shark had been resting on the bottom of the tank right in front of the main viewing area.  It had been there for the whole that I was in the water and hadn’t moved an inch.  I floated passed the shark several times grazing it with my hands.

sharkattackI swam up to the Leopard shark, laughing hysterically to myself.  I grabbed its dorsal fin and started to dry hump the back of the shark.  The shark still didn’t move.  The people at the window watched in disgust, while others snapped pictures.  I saw mothers putting their hands over their childrens eyes.  It caused a bit of a commotion.

I felt a hand grab my shoulder.  It was the SeaWorld employee who was in the water with us.  He signaled to me that I needed to leave the tank immediately.

Once I got out of the water I received a fierce reprimanding from the staff.  I was escorted off premises by security.  They told me that I was no longer able to set foot in the park or they would call the authorities.

I had a different view of what was acceptable and funny at 26.  Hell, I still would find it pretty funny today if I saw it happen.  Although, I probably wouldn’t be the guy humping the shark this time.  But honestly, how many people can say they got kicked out of SeaWorld for molesting a shark?!

Coming From a Place of Abundance

For many years my life seemed to work off feast or famine.  I  got nervous and felt the need to hold onto things so tightly because I feared I may never be able to create more in my life.  It was as if I feel that I didn’t deserve money, happiness or women.  I haven’t felt like I was enough in so many ways.  I’m not smart enough, good looking enough, funny enough; so I certainly can’t ever attain what other people have.  That mentality caused me to lose out on many opportunity before I even attempted them.  I forced myself to be a beggar and took what I could get.

This attitude and perspective of not being enough has cost me greatly in life.  I have talked myself out of getting the girl I wanted or the financial success I envisioned without ever making the attempt to go for it.  The fear of failure and self doubt clouded my vision of who I really am.  My jaded view of my abilities and attractiveness have been self sabotaging.

Now there has been times where the opposite is true.   I have been too full of myself and cocky.  I projected arrogance and a false sense of confidence.  My weaknesses were exposed quickly in those cases and I had my ass handed to me.

Coming from a place of abundance isn’t about cockiness or a false sense of self esteem.  It is the understanding of my capabilities and how to make them work to best suit my needs to accomplish a goal.  It’s something I have done many times in my life, but never really understood what it was or what I should call it.  I just always told myself I was “on a roll.”   That feeling like no matter what I touched it turned to gold.

It’s the mindset that my livelihood and happiness does not have to be contingent upon a singular achievement.  Whether that be a business, a woman, or a dollar figure.  Being aware that there are numerous opportunities out there to create success in my life.  I just have to keep trying new things and keep looking until I find what works. Then once that no longer works, either tweak it or move on to the next opportunity.

The abundance mentality is the opposite of desperate.  I have allowed myself to act desperate so often in life when I did not need to.  There’s been times in my life that I have had 100’s of thousands of dollars sitting in a bank account, but I chose to skip out on amazing opportunities because I didn’t want to spend $1000 to invest in me.  I have had situations where multiple women were chasing after me.  But I decided to keep chasing the one that it didn’t work out with time and time again because “she was the one.”

These are all acts of desperation.  I was clinging onto what I had for dear life.  Hoping and praying it would last or come back to me.  I would squeeze every last ounce out of a person or opportunity because I feared not being able to find more.  Even when the well had run dry I would keep going back, instead of focusing my efforts on new ventures that could make the future more fruitful.

So many times in life I have settled when I know I could have done better.  This behavior makes me unattractive to the world.  The universe senses that and it pushes opportunities away from me.  The abundance mindset is the ability to value myself accurately and appropriately so that I can let go of things and people that no longer serve me in a positive manner.  Because I know that I can find someone or something else that will better suit me and my needs.

The Anticipation Is Better Than The Actual Success

I feel like I’m going to explode with excitement as I grind toward my goals.  Then I get there and I think, whats next?  This seems to be the theme of my life on many levels.  Especially when it comes to women and getting laid.  Once I actually get them in bed I’m usually not that into it or them.  My pink cloud disappears quickly.  I came, I conquered.  No pun intended.

I go through phases when I am trying to achieve goals in my life.  They are all marked with there ups and downs.  They are usually pretty easy for identify due to the characteristic I portray in each phase.  For instance when I am trying to get a women I usually go through 6 phases:

  1.  Introductory Phase – We meet – I’m super excited and cant wait to talk to her.  We text all day.
  2. Dating Phase – We go out on 1-2 dates.  I get I start getting to know her or who she is trying to portray.
  3. Get Her In Bed Phase – This is exactly as it sounds.  After a date or two I get her home and we do our thing.  If I really like her and think she has potential, I try to extend this for at least 3-4 dates.  This holds my interest in her longer.
  4. The Numb Phase –  This phase begins a few seconds to minutes after I start having sex with her.  I question why I am even doing this.  Sometimes I question my very existence.  It gets even worse once I cum
  5. The Awkward Phase – Once I have finished and we are laying next to each other my mind starts to race.  I don’t want to really be touched at this point.  Cuddling makes this phase much worse.  I wonder what shes thinking.  I also wonder when shes leaving.
  6. The Insecure Phase – This phase is all about my curiosity of what she’s thinking about.  Was she pleased?  Will this be a repeat customer?  My mind starts going to “I probably could have done better” or “I should have done this or that.”  I say things to the girl that make the situation much more awkward than it needs to be.  It’s obvious to the woman I am insecure; and most likely also an asshole.

The first time I sleep with someone tends to be a bit awkward.  I’m feeling the person out.  Trying to figure out what she likes and doesn’t like.  What limits can I push?  Often I hold back because I’m not quite sure shes into certain things; like a finger in her butt.

I never used to care or think about this type of stuff when I was younger.  #YOLO.   I just wanted to get mine. Now my ego comes into play.  I want to be a sexual dynamo.  If she said or didn’t say certain things during sex I over-think it.

I wonder why she said or didn’t say certain things about my body or my dick?’  Did she not like it?  Weren’t they enough?  Was my stroke off?  What happened?

The Insecure Phase is in full force at this point.  I get in my head and over-analyze the situation.  I start to act desperate.  I create a much more awkward situation because I don’t feel I got the praise I so justly deserved.  Even if she told me how great it was and she got off I start digging for more.  I want compliments damn it!  I want to make sure Ill get a second chance so I can really show her my A game.

This type of insecure insanity is what has kept me from enjoying my success in life.  I always want more.  I used to love the phrase “never enough.”  Being comfortable with myself and going with the flow is very difficult for me at times.  I love to control and manipulate situations.

After I achieve a goal, a better approach would be to change my mindset to one of happiness and relaxation.  Slow things down and take the time to reflect on what has occurred and enjoy the moment.  Then build upon that moment predicated on real facts.  Not the craziness I brew in my mind.  Life becomes a lot better when I am able to take that advice.  I mean after all I just got laid, how bad could life really be??

KRS…Unwanted Party Guest (Part 1)

In my early and mid-teens, I was a very awkward, scrawny and unattractive young man.  Like many at that age I was very obnoxious, disrespectful and sought attention in all the wrong ways.  I was a mediocre athlete for my diminutive size and lack of strength.  Getting bullied by older kids, while bullying those that I could actually scare, was the dichotomy of my daily life.

At 12 years old I started drinking with my friends on the weekends.  Unlike most of my friends I drank quite heavily.  Drinking until I blacked became a regular occurrence.

It started out with my friends and I drinking 40’s on the train tracks and in the woods.  Then It upgraded to party balls, bottles of shitty vodka and SoCo.  The alcohol intensified all of my worst qualities.  That’s when KRS showed up.

KRS was my sauced up, slurring, offensive, drunken alter ego.   My friends gave me this nickname in junior high.  My signature look became a blank stare with nothing going on behind my eyes.   At first they thought it was hysterical when I got that drunk.  They would encourage my behavior just so they would have something to break my balls about later that week.

Whenever we had left over alcohol from the weekend I would always volunteer to hold it for my friends.  When I said hold it, what I really meant was drink it.  Every week I had a different excuse about what happened to the booze.  It got to the point where they would just hid the alcohol outdoors rather than give it to me.

I used to love to drink before my intramural basketball games in high school.  I would show up reeking of liquor.  It would just ooze out of my pours when I would sweat.  All of my friends could smell it on me.  I would be out on the courts drunk as hell, running and gunning, refusing to pass to my teammates.  The first year our team, The Specials, didn’t win a game.

One night I recall (vaguely) drinking the majority of bottle of really shitty vodka.  It was a plastic bottle of Vladimir Vodka if I remember correctly.  The bottle was supposed to be shared among five of us.  I had other plans for it.

binge_npI bounced around that night from party to party drinking cup after cup of Vodka and lemonade.  At one point I found myself asleep in a bush.  By the end of the night I was laying in a friends bath tub projectile vomiting.  I had to be carried out by my arms and legs, down three flights of stair out of his house and into a car.  My head banged off numerous steps on my way out .

As time went on my antics became worse.  My behavior became less appealing to my friends.  Before long I was banned from most parties.  Which meant my friends were banned if they brought me.  It was high school and everyone lived for house parties.  Needless to say my unwelcome status led to me getting dropped by my core group of friends rather quickly.


I Hate the Fact That I Miss You

I have a tendency in my life to romanticize the past.  It’s this bad habit of remembering all the good times and feelings, even if they were few and far between.  I struggle to recognize the reality of how unhappy I was with whatever I am missing.

These feelings of longing aren’t just limited to my intimate relationships or people from my past.  I miss the places I lived, careers I’ve had, and even drugs I’ve done.  Some of this stems from regret for the choices I have made.  Maybe I gave up too soon or stayed there too long.

The majority of the time I revisit the past and the things I miss, they are never quite the same as I remembered.  They don’t feel the same.  They don’t invoke the feelings in me that I hoped they would.  The sex isn’t as good, the views aren’t as beautiful, the drugs never get me as high.

I’ve spent a great deal of my life brooding over the past.   I sit and think about how I could have made different choices that may have led to a different outcome.  Hoping that somehow I will get another shot at my past.  It’s always the story of “well if I had just done X differently.”  It becomes nothing more than an exercise in futility.

Habitually, I miss people, places and things for all the wrong reasons.  A fair amount of guilt and shame tend to accompany my feelings of nostalgia.  I often wonder why I spend so much time ruminating over what has been done.  There’s nothing I can do to change what’s happened; so why do I let it drain my life today?  I know that previous statement is very obvious and clearly not profound.  But it’s something I always struggle to accept.

And there in lies the key to this life lesson; acceptance.  Acceptance is the only thing that can give me freedom from my past.  It allows me to find inner peace and say goodbye to what once was.  One of the most quoted pieces of literature on acceptance come from The Big Book of AA:

      “And acceptance is the answer to all my problems today. When I am disturbed, it is because I find some person, place, thing or situation — some fact of my life — unacceptable to me, and I can find no serenity until I accept that person, place, thing or situation as being exactly the way it is supposed to be at this moment.”

Acceptance is the most obvious, yet powerful tool I can think of when it comes to dealing with the past.  It should be the most simple principle to apply because its makes the most sense.  Whats done is done!  There’s no time machine.  I can’t right the wrongs I have done.  But, I can accept was has occurred and move forward making positive changes in my life to ensure that I don’t make those mistakes again.

Many people before me have said that the past belongs exactly where it is; in the past.  It’s normal and natural to miss something or someone.   Reminiscing over the good times.  However, If I want serenity and happiness today I need to leave my past alone.  I need to live in the present and build for the future.  I can draw on the experiences and the lessons I have learned to be a better person today and in the future.  Spending time and energy focusing on what could have been keeps me from creating what will become.

“Yesterday is history and tomorrow’s a mystery
But baby right now, its just about you and me”