Oh yeah.... The different shocking experiences I've had throughout my life.
Not long after I turned ten, we moved into a decent neighborhood and a fully furnished house. I had friends there, as well as enemies and bullies and so on. But, at least there weren't any neighborhood kids pissing into each other's mouths and making a game out of it.
Also: The house we lived in was haunted, too. My sister and I experienced many shocks while living there. That story has been told in a previous post.
I had a big shocker while I was in my Freshman year of high school. I was up one night, watching the 11:00 news on TV with my parents, when I saw a picture of my old Catholic school buddy, Russell, flash across the screen. I told Mom and Dad to turn up the volume because I couldn't believe what I was hearing. The news reporter was saying that Russell had hung himself in a mental institution. I hadn't spoken to him or seen him (because his family moved out of state) for a couple years before this happened. For the most part, we lost touch with the exception of one phone conversation.
Most of that conversation was about him "being so bored with everything". I remember trying to cheer him up and saying things would get better. But, obviously, things didn't. Later I would feel guilty for not staying in touch with him. That shock to the emotional and mental system in myself stuck around for awhile. But, all of it faded away, eventually.
I continued through high school, coming out of my quiet era with a gradual roar of thunder, so to speak. I continually shocked myself as my high school years whizzed by. I wrote articles for the school paper, enjoyed playing different roles in school plays and began to be one of the biggest party animals in high school. Drinking, smoking' "cabbage", a little vandalism here and there and general mischief making was all part of the fun back then. But even though I did all of that shit, I still was shy around the girls.
Being tongue-tied around the girls was one obstacle I didn't overcome until I was 21. Yep, I was a virgin until I was 21. Before that... a professional masturbator. The virgin thing was a big deal for me then. Presently, I look back at that time and laugh at myself for being so focused on something so trivial. I think that's understandable.
After graduating high school, I did something shockingly stupid. I joined the military. I was 18. I didn't know what to do with the rest of my life -so I joined the Air Force. While there, in 1982, the United States wasn't directly participating in any wars. The military didn't need half the people they had during this era.
There was nothing for us to do except some lame-ass, middle of the night guard duty and picking lint off of our beds. No, it's the truth. And what were we guarding? Nothing. Just standing by a door all night long. During the day, we picked garbage up from the grounds of the base. That was pretty much it.
I was too young to be there, really. Too homesick. Never slept but once the five weeks I stayed in Basic training. Had never been completely on my own before that, either. I was bored. I was pissed that I had allowed myself to believe the recruiter that came to school the year before. He made it sound like it was going to be like Disney World. LOL. And I was gullible enough back then to fall for it.
I rebelled a bit while there, as well.
Our flight commander or whatever you call him, ordered me into his office to lecture me about my attitude problem. He was sitting in leather chair, smoking a cigar, waiting for me. When he saw me, he immediately began his lecture on "bad attitudes". I said, "Sorry, sir" after every sentence he spoke to irritate him. He didn't seem to care about that, however. After 15 or so minutes of berating, he ordered me to leave.
After the speech, I did an "about face" move. You know. Where you turn yourself around on one foot, sort of. Unfortunately for him, I was less than a foot away from his own foot. And then my foot stepped down directly onto his foot, causing him to scream. When I twisted completely around, with my full weight on his foot, his pain intensified. And then he really screamed.
It was an honest mistake but I laughed about it, afterwards.
It wasn't long after that, when I went to see the highest ranking officer on the base and told him I wanted to leave. After I gave him about five minutes worth of reasons of why I wanted to get the fuck out of the Air Force, he quickly said no (but not very enthusiastically) to that idea so I gave him an ultimatum: I said, "Either you allow me to leave the service or I'm going to make trouble". He waved his hand and said, "Well, okay, if that's how you feel about it". And that was that. As I mentioned before, this was during a time when we weren't at war, for once.
So I left the Air Force, got a job back home at a grocery store and eventually became a night manager while working there.
After saving enough money up, I took a trip out west to Arizona, by myself. It was a truly great experience! Since then, I've been to Arizona twice and I'd like to go back again -the next time with my wife. I love the scenery, the weather and the people that much.
During my first visit, I had the chance to walk in and around old Indian caves and saw some ancient artwork on the walls. I picked up various pieces of the pottery these Indians had used and examined them, as if I were on some archaeological quest. I was in complete awe that I was actually standing inside an ancient Indian dwelling. I was equally surprised that they allowed tourists to go in and out of these caves. On the floor of these ancient homes were the foot tracks of many tourists who had come. They were free to roam wherever they wanted to go, while there.
Presently, no one is allowed in these same caves, in order to preserve what's left of the natural condition it was in before.
Next, I visited the Grand Canyon -which is breathtaking, indeed. When I saw how huge and beautiful it was, I was not only shocked, but I was humbled by just how vast and deep it really the Grand Canyon was. I think everyone in the world should see this natural wonder at least once in their lifetime. Pictures and description don't do the experience of actually being there any justice.
Next on my list of shocks, would be the fact that a decent woman accepted my marriage proposal at the age of 23. My own friends tried to warn her about even dating me way back then. My fiancee then moved in with me into my apartment before we were married, to save money for our wedding and honeymoon. Some members of both her family's side and my own were appalled by us "living in sin". It's funny, now, when I think about the various reactions from them about our living arrangement.
Today, living together before or without marriage is more like a "who cares?" kind of thing.
For our honeymoon, we went to Disney World. I finally got to see fucking Disney World. The real thing -not the military version. LOL. Actually, that was my third visit there. Heh heh.
There have been many shocks since then, of course, throughout my life. Car wrecks. New additions (as in children, not leprechauns) to the family. Different jobs I've worked. Promotions. My foot deformity and other health conditions worsening to the point where I had to get SS Disability. I've also enjoyed wonderfully awe-inspiring out of state trips.
Sometimes, the trips were taken inside my head. Heh heh.
The worst shock, of course, came suddenly when my Mom passed away five years ago. It took around six months before the shock of that faded. Then grief took over for the next four years after the shock but that's another story I've told already numerous times on this blog in one form or another.
I could go on and on with this theme but I've been writing this post for so long tonight, my eyes are getting blurry and my brain has gone to "full mush" mode. I also have to get up early to dig my wife's car out of a snow drift before she goes to work in three and a half hours. It's 2:00 in the morning right now. Wish me luck!
I guess the moral of all of this, if there is one, would be: No matter how many shocks you are thrown in life, the most important thing to do is... PUSH FORWARD. And right now, I'm definitely headed in the right direction. And I'm not just talking about the way to my bed, either.