Twenty sixteen

Some years just seem more momentous than others. Just so happens, 2015 was not one of them.

It’s not as if ’15 was totally forgettable. I jumped out of the comforting bosom of corporate America into the vast nothingness of freelance space. It’s the first time I wasn’t answering to a boss in some 30 years. More.

In 2015, Mary Jo turned an age she doesn’t want to acknowledge. The boy turned 18. He started to fill out college applications. He got accepted to a couple places.

We lost Crash, something that hit all of us harder than we ever could imagine. We got Brodie. He’s still goofy.

There were sicknesses and arguments and sadness and laughs. We got out of the house a little. We stuck around some. We had successes. Some failure. December was on us before we knew it.

We rung in the New Year, Mary Jo and I, for the first time in years. She was in bed by 12:05. I had to stay up until Luke got home from a party, sometime between 12:30 and 1.

And now it’s 2016. This one, I feel is going to be different.

hourglass.oneLuke’s leaving the house. To which I can say, without hesitation: Gulp. It’s not that I’m particularly sad or afraid of an empty nest. I’m not. I’m convinced good things are ahead. But you don’t spend 18 years with a kid — laughing, fighting, yelling, tripping over his size 19s — and move on overnight. This is going to take some time.

I have some health things to take care of. One more serious than others. I’ll get to that in a later post.

Luke has to pick a college. On Saturday, we’ll find out whether he’ll be accepted into Georgia Tech, his first choice, on early admission. He could still make it later, too, if he doesn’t make it this round. But, God, that would complicate things.

Which college? Maybe, if GT says yes Saturday, that will seal it. But, after Saturday, we’ll still have to hear from Illinois and North Carolina State, and a final turndown (expected) from MIT. And if GT puts us off for a few weeks, we’ll have to wait for them, too. Then we might want to hold out for scholarship offers, too. We have a couple in hand. But we might want to wait on others. And what about dorm reservations? The earlier the better, they say. But what if you lay down a few hundred for a dorm deposit at School X and School Y comes back with an acceptance and a great scholarship a week later? It’s a game, this college business. One. Big. Game.

We could move. That’s a major thing, eh? Got a truck? We might stay in this house, where we’ve been for somewhere around 13 years. But it’s awfully big, and we’ll have one fewer person using it. So, depending some on where Luke goes to college and our work future, we could move. We’ve talked about it. Downsizing. Moving closer to town, maybe. It’s in play. Especially if I find a job back with corporate America that I like that’s in town. One thing my time away from a daily work grind has confirmed for me: Commuting blows. Worse, it’s a life suck. It’s the worst.

I should probably get something that pays better while I’m at it. Whether that’s landing a great freelance contract rather that flitting around four or five places, like I did for much of ’15, or actually getting a full-time, benefits-eligible job, we’ll see. But I still have too many earning years ahead to be frittering them away on jobs that pay $200 per.

We need to teach Brodie to walk on a leash. But, damn, is he goofy.

Our 20th anniversary is in a couple months.

I’ll go golfing again with my brothers, dammit. And I will be low man, with a few rounds (at least!) under 100. Dammit.

We’ll have to have one, last big blowout family vacation before Luke heads off to college, ’cause you never know what he’ll need/want to do in the summer from here on out. Where? We just don’t know yet.

I will rediscover my jump shot. Once I deal with that health problem.

So, Luke’s leaving the house for a college somewhere, we could be moving right after him, I’m (still) looking for new job(s), there’s that mysterious health thing … and those are just a few of the things that I can see from here.

It’s going to be a ride, this one. I’m on. Let’s go.

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