I sometimes wonder how it is my thoughts end up being so irregular and diluted. It seems like the only similarity for my new thought processes and that of my old ones is the fact that the wheels are turning, but the ideas and reflections are immensely different. I remember a time where it seemed like every day and at points every minute or hour could have been described as a life lesson or something to pay up most attention to. I also remember how daunting and at times even confusing, such instances and conversations of that nature were. There once was a part of my life where everything seemed to be in place or sync with everything else. I suppose the possibility of everything still being so similar is still there. Perhaps it’s now my own mind and decisions that have made it appear to be so complicated and foreign. It was always evident to me that I was the one in control of the life I was leading even though it was all totally guided by my father at some points. Weather it was to my knowledge or not, there was always a plan and idea in place, and he seemed to always know what it was or how it would turn out. Maybe one day I’ll understand if that was true or not, but for now, in this particular time of my life, I believe it was. One of the first memories I have of him from an old townhouse we had in downtown Winchester. It was lifetimes ago, it feels like. I was rummaging through an abnormally large white toy box my father had made me. He always loved working with wood and he, in my opinion, as I’m sure most everyone else’s, was truly gifted in his craftsmanship. My sister was still quite young, so I’m sure whatever it was we were playing was grand and extravagant, and I’m sure most certainly not quiet or neat, or to most children’s standards, typical. We had always been able to almost whatever, provided we got along nicely and of course wasn’t doing bad things or hurting each other. Mom had yelled upstairs to the play room that dinner was ready. The succulent and sweet smells of oregano, parsley, thyme and sage filled the house with poignant highs of rosemary spiced beef, accompanied by savory scents of garlic and wheat. Her immaculate knowing of all her herbs and spices always proved well. In my favorite of ways, her cooking. This night was a usual favorite, spaghetti. We came down to a set table with our salads already placed with the garlic bread still steaming in its country style weaved breadbasket with the red and white towel that had always been paired forever. Dad came to sit down just as she had brought the last of such flavorful food to the table. The seating order at the table always in those early years, to me, seemed to stay the same. Parents at the ends and my sister and I in the middle. My father looked down at me and said, “What a wonderful looking meal, its great we’re all together.” The remark was a pleasant, but normal sounding and as that of something usual he would say. But, as I would come to notice, most things would sound such ways. It has taken along life of lessons to be able to fully understand what exactly he was remarking upon in just such few simple words. Most obviously, the fact, roof over our heads, food on the table, and simple things like that. But the complex things like as to that of what kept us all together, what made it all happen and most certainly the loved involved that we all had for one another was more among the things that seemed to be ever predominant in his nature of thinking. Of course there were other things but for now we shall keep it basic and “simple”. This is to my first lesson, to the best of my recollection anyway. He always wanted us all to know how important it was to have each other and making a family. As to most people in the world, family is one of the few things that is always important, most usually also, some of the most complicated, but always something that is necessary to man in his life. I find it particularly interesting the one of the first lessons in life I can think of has to do family. It sometimes seems like that is a face of myself that changes a lot, is family. It remains important and holy just the same but a man’s family is not only defined by the blood he shares, but by the people he chooses to keep in his life as well. This is a separate lesson in its own ways but the foundation starts with those ideals. It’s a separate part of interesting to me to think about the word foundation also. Not just in reference to construction, (a part of my life that I loved very much) but to the more mentally stimulating sense of the word it can have. For me, the word reminds of very many things. One of the first would be how every relationship you have, with every kind of person you choose to have one with, has or starts with a foundation. Whether it be and intimate one, personal one or a career, or neighbor or stranger even, there must be a foundation that starts from within yourself, a similarity between, or a common thing presented by complexity of the universe that cannot be explained, a foundation is needed for almost anything if one is going to use it to build upon. This was always important for a person like me because at times it would appear, if I’m not building up, I’m tearing down. Stagnation and laziness is a poison to life, which we all have struggles with but important thing is, to change, have, or do anything positive in life, you must care to build it better. If one cares to build something better, a part of knowledge that has always lead me to doing so is, the foundation is the start but the plan and desired outcome put into motion when building anything is to first start with a thought process. This is important because our thoughts quite literally make the person we are, and the person we become is sure to have the most to do with the things we manifest and strive to create. And whether or not I could get that stubborn man that is my father to admit it, I’m sure he knew that to be as true as anyone with understanding of such things does. My father always had his own way of doing things, and that usually proved to be what worked the best, not always, but in a more then fair amount of the time. Of course it’s possible that no person on this earth knows exactly what it is they’re doing all the time. I understand that for whatever it may be, but the fact is whether you know what you’re doing or not, the thought used to doing so usually has some degree of education or at least an idea of how something works, or the final outcome. In my father’s peculiar instance, it did not always appear to be so. Not saying again, that most of the time I’m sure the man did in fact, have a very well thought out, clearly executed, and exact plan or knowing of what he was doing, but what I find myself thinking about in this example is; when you don’t know exactly what you’re doing, or what the outcome of something will be, there this is a specific order of operations, or, thought process, that can certainly effect the desired outcomes, results or “manipulations” if you will. What I was taught by him, life and experience, even sometimes what seemed to be just the natural way the world worked, the thought process, whether knowledgeable about a thing or not, must include; an evaluation of all things that matter, physical and mental, as many different perspectives of the thing involved, in a conceivable and appropriate measure of course, any and all outside variations for desirable effects , the “delivery” of all final solutions and desired outcome to an end result, and then finally, the end result itself. I wish there was a situation, or some kind of instance that I could describe that would better exemplify what it is that I mean, but their isn’t. It is that way only because the thought process should be regarded until it is in fact the very thing that best carries you through this world. It is the thing that allows you build, create, manifest, send away, or reject, it is the thing that best represents yourself and what you are to your own opinion, and everyone else’s, the process in which you use all your available brain power is at the least, as earlier mentioned, what creates yourself and your environment. The thought is the lightening, the rain is your intention, the sky, your world in which you’re effecting in such omnipotent ways, with the thunder as your rolling will to continue ever forward with your mind. And it is important to view such things in a very grandiose way, the reason being, it is the most impacting thing in your life, that starts on such an outer level that becomes “delivered” to what a person has or manifests in their own world. Being those thoughts and things said to be good or bad, by one’s own judgment or others, is what builds and continues to build, one’s own empire. This as said before, being such a tremendous thing, is again the reason why there is necessarily no “example” is, again, to the fact that the thought process should be involved in everything. This is not always and easy thing to do, as I was often reminded of by myself or my father at times. So having a positive thought process is not always easy. There are many influences in life that can sometimes altar a man’s thoughts or intentions. Being those things for whatever they are, or could be, can present a whole separate problem or dilemma. These things sometimes include; anger, depression and confusion, and at other times, differently, may involve more physical things like greed, addiction or envy. For myself, it is amazing the transformation I endeavored through on the instances in which I was best taught this lesson. It had taken place on the night of my eighteenth birthday. It was in the spring, mid. April when the trees all and there splendid vibrancy of leaves are back, and the hum of the beauty and harmony that is nature is in the air. Being that day of good weather, I wished to demonstrate to my father that I was eager to start filling a roll as a man by not treating it any differently. In doing that meant, with of course other things, going to work. As mentioned, I loved working with him, for the most part anyway. The most being the privilege of working next to a structural and at times, an engineering genius, and the other part being that you don’t always get along with your boss. Especially when it is someone with such the high title as a father. Anyone that has ever worked with any close family can tell you exactly what I’m talking about. I’ll endow more on the matter of careers at a later point, for my focus is falling on the point of processing through a difficult and also damaging time in a separate face of my life then a career, it was as to that of intimacy with a girl I had a relationship with. At the time it was love for me when we had it, and when life proved different for our plans it became something I resisted, instead of thought through. The work day had positively ended; I had an immaculately made steak dinner with twice baked potatoes with shrimp and bacon kabobs on the grill. Another added plus was a particular favorite of my fathers and mine, was hand battered, fried acorn squash. This meal may not be ideal to some, but for people raised if the glorious country of Appalachia, it is with on every kings list of meals. With this accompanied but the beautiful setting of our country home in the mountains, with family, after a prosperous day, at the time not more could be asked for, except for what seemed to be the only thing I wanted; the companionship of a woman. As said before the relationship I was previously and recently in, the one that I wanted was only her. She wasn’t any typical or casual type of abnormally beautiful or absolutely radiant species of the opposite sex; to me she was everything perfect to that a partner should be. From the way she spoke, to the way she carried herself among others, all the down to the way she did her makeup and brushed her hair. This goes for her imperfections as well. I was always taught, in some cases, the imperfection or even imperfections, presented to a man in observing almost anything, should be judged in ways that allow imperfections to in fact, become perfections. I shall hope to perspectivate more on that matter of perfections at a later point also. Because something has an imperfection, that is what makes it perfect in some instances. In my opinion as to that of a woman, imperfections make perfection because it allow a deeper connection of intimacy, being the reason it allows for more personal experience because she does little things that make her the person she is, which allows her the luxury of being her own self. If not explained better before or previously gathered, the specific girl I’m speaking of was not present in my life at that time, I was completely and dreadfully devastated over the matter to the point of unhealthy decisions and thoughts at that time. As you can imagine, being a young man at the time with such a heartbreaking impairment, not that it wasn’t ever talked about with my father, I just didn’t want to further trouble him about something that was to be my own personal matter. After the terrifically and most thoughtfully presented evening before mentioned, and I must say a very heady buzz, I retired to my room to relax as well extend my intoxication. After a while of drowning my own explicably terrible and grim thoughts, I decided to make a phone call at the poorest of points in which my sorrows became blacking. Anyone that can relate knows that only made the situation described immensely worse. At the darkest and most emotionally draining of the night I remember lashing out in my frustration and punching one of the huge full body mirrors that made my closet doors. The laceration to my hand and wrist we quite deep and gashed. The noise was loud and clambering like a frying pan delivery truck crashing into a mountain of 10 million aluminum cans at 100 miles an hour. The complexity of thought and emotions clouding my head like a horrid wasteland constellation of stars and universes comparable to our own screaming around at the speed of sound had suddenly and abruptly ceased, and for one almost peaceful and harmonious second I was only focused on the wound I had just contracted. Not on the pain, but along with the incredible fact that my mind had been alleviated of the stress from before, but the tranquility that came with it. And standing in the mirror of the other door, I picked up a huge shard of the gnarly and jagged glass, and with the pressure comparable to pulling a wine bottle open, I drug the serrated tip across my chest from top my breast to just above my belly button on the opposite side. The immediate pouring flashes of dark velvet flowing quickly. It appeared thick at first but thinned and smelled of salts most likely from all the alcohol in my system. The pain wasn’t present, the emotional gravity of what had all just happened in what seemed like a vast eternity of time, were no were to be found or felt. For just that moment, I had released from my conscious mind and into an observational state of being, totally living on the harm I had just done unto myself with the alien thoughts of how calm and collected I seemed to be. Now of course, in my state of absence, I wasn’t knowing to the fact that through the music and wonderful events of my father’s evening after I had retired, he very much knew the faint sound of what he had just happened to heard the middle of leaving his lavatory, and he knew that such a sound should have never came from his sons room at such a late hour of the night in any kind of normal and usual evening, and naturally as any loving father would do, came to investigate. The only long hall way was filled with pictures of children in the family; some of them even my own. My room was at the end of the hall on the right. As my father knocked and opened the door, unbeknownst to him the malice he was about to discover. Not only does he have the utterly unnerving realization that his only begotten son is atrociously mutilating his body, his temple, but he himself has obviously lost himself in something so ghastly low and damaging, but had not turned to his only father in his time of need. To this very day I wish I had the opulence to describe how incredibly terrible it makes me feel to even remember I put someone so important to me through such a dreadfully horrible thing, much less think about it. The look in his eyes and on his face was like he was already burying his only son and carrier of his blood and name. I grabbed the gruesome instrument in my hand so fast and hard I ripped through the flesh on my fingers of my right hand and even more red stained my tanned red-brown skin, like wine spilt on a fine rug, horribly noticeable. I’m hoping that it goes without saying that he freaked out at the detriment he had just came to some kind of terms with. He rushed in and grabbed me, not in anger, but in desperation, he was wiping his hands down my chest frantically asking where else I was bleeding from, my blood and tears flying everywhere, he moved me down the hall to the bathroom like an E.R. gunshot victim on a CSI show. Then soaking towels proceeded to clean me up. After pleading and begging, and making him see I was ashamed and embarrassed enough, (especially after contacting my mother and other family members) I finally convinced him not to take me to the hospital. Then I had some family come up to our home late that night to comfort us and be supportive, as a close family like ours would do in any situation similar to that. After a few drinks and everything became more about spending time with one another and discussing pleasantries and admiration’s of life, I paused to go to the restroom. When I finished washing up, I heard some noise and opened the door to my father with two drinks in his hand motioning me to his room. As I entered, he was already sitting, and I was instructed to grab my drink and close the door. As I walked across the room I tried to break the tension by glancing at all the things around the room, the enormous bed covered in mountains of pillows and nice goose-down comforters, the huge TV and stereo, he had tremendously gorgeous native American decorations everywhere, and two fantastic lambskins draped across the floor lavishly. However, I’d seen them all before so he saw clean through my attempt. When I sat down and took a swallow of the drink, I relished the fact that he made mine not as strong as his, but in great balance so as the taste was perfect. The whiskey and ginger ale tingling my tongue still as I started my sentence, “ I’m sorry-“ was all I had managed to breathe before he stopped me. He said something very similar a close friend reminded me of recently. He said for me to not be sorry, and seeing the confused look on my face he said; in a man’s life there will be many times that he feels regret and instances that are grievance to his person, as well as his mind a heart. He and others reminded me that no real man is ever sorry. They’re apologetic. Being sorry implies that you are a sorry person and sorry in the way you think, act, and relate to the world you’re living in, is what he implied and explained. He also reminded that I was raised to be better and of more sound nature and state of mind. I explained that I didn’t know how to apologize for such an awe-striking matter, and didn’t know how to feel anything but sorrow for what I had done. That is when he looked over at me, with the kind of look you give someone when you look past their eyes, past flesh and bone, and into their heart and mind, to the very being that makes a person a person, not merely human, at he said when times like these come, you do whatever is wholesomely required to be done, within reason, to make one’s self feel better. If you have to tear down and rebuild everything you’ve ever worked for so that you can get back to a stable and solid foundation in life, it’s a necessary thing to do. Feel as absolutely sad and heartbroken and disgusted, angry, frustrated, abandoned and alone you can feel. The amount of time will sometimes change how long you can feel that way based on whatever it is you’re feeling, but it should never be long enough to become harmful to yourself or the ones you love. He was telling me to feel all of everything, as much as I could, so that when I hit bottom, the only place I had to go was up, and by feeling as bad as I could about the matter, there could be no quakes that shake the next foundation I start building upon even better. He looked away and in a long sip, finished his drink as I finished mine. As I stood up to exit he told me never to forget, to hurt myself in secret and destroy all he’s ever given or wanted for me, is to destroy him in the only way I could never take back. It meant that he could not do the only primal thing most fathers wish to do, which is protect their family. My father being a very intellectual man, and of course as mentioned before a loving one, had an astounding way of explained anything to anyone in a way not only easy for them to understand, but once he had a conversation like that with a person, they were left different down to the soul. They or at least I, came away better equipped and armed for the world because I didn’t only get taught something, I got taught how to use it. There has unfortunately been a few more experiences in life, as I’m sure there may be more challenging times to come, but I will always know in my mind I am capable of not only overcoming such things, but learning and taking from those tribulations what is useful to further my prosperity in the life I’m creating. If you can master the power of your emotions, it is the first step in being able to master the power of your own thoughts. My mind and life are still not perfect, far from that night to where I am now, but I know that they always continue to serve me the best way they can while I’m still evolving my education of the world. But I know they get better at the pace they do, from the ability they present and allowing them to do so, with the way I use such said mind power in life. Being able to control your emotions and make them work for you is an important lesson learned if one wishes to be a leader of their self, not succumb to uneven and diluted choices made being overcome with emotion.