It has really been fun having my daughter KT around and being able to talk with her about the kinds of things that a parent talks with their child as their personalities truly begin to emerge. And it has been a chance for her to become familiar with my disability and how it has not altered how I approach my life. Next to reminding her how much that I love her, that was the most important thing for me to share with her on this visit.
We were able to get our portrait photos done at JC Penney’s and that was the other thing that I wanted to make sure we got done while she was here. She is very photogenic and we did take some good shots. They will be shared when they come in both here and on my Face Book page.
YOU’RE IN LOVE WITH YOUR CITY, MY DARLING, IT’S FILLED WITH THOSE YOU’D NEVER THOUGHT YOU’D KNOW
With all the “everything else” to my decision to move here grading out very highly, I have found myself at a loss as to what happened between Nebraska and me. As I walked along a portion of the riverfront with my daughter, I could not help but feel a pang of regret that Nebraska was not the one that I got to share its beauty with. My daughter, bless her heart, got in the boat that putters around a small lagoon near the ConAgra headquarters in spite of her reservations. I cannot say enough about how impressed I am with my trooper!!
There were some things that I did not get to experience with KT that I had hoped to. We never did make it out to my training friend’s place to ride horses and that was just as well, she is not thrilled by the idea of being on one! Unfortunately, this also extended to the carriage that tours the Old Market/Downtown area. But now that she has let me know that she is not interested, I may just go down one weekend and treat a stranger to a ride or maybe my girlfriend and her two younger boys will accompany me. Still, when I imagined on my ESPN Sports Center© highlight of what Omaha was going to be like, much of what I did with KT I had thought I would have already done with Nebraska.
Looking back over the body of our relationship I am not surprised. I would not say that I regret that things did not work out for us but there is the lost opportunity to have something special. The romance that could have been, a successful relationship that was born over the internet, spawned through the connections of dial-up service and dormant dreams of Nebraska, was not vital enough to pull us together.
If I was pressed I could give reasons as to why we never connected. But other than my thinking that of the two of us that had preconceptions as to how things would be like for our relationship, I would say that she had the more tangible construct but the least amount of consideration. Heading out to the unknown is not something that I am afraid to do because there is a familiarity about going out on adventures, and being prepared for those things is second nature to me. And after 18 months of not being able to establish boundaries for what we were to each other, it seemed that I had make a choice based solely on what my overarching goal was – which was to live a fulfilling life.
In a situation where I was “the road team” and the kinds of risk that I was taking with my well-being in moving here, I did not like feeling like that I was being put back in the pack of her life. Whether it was obligations to others, to a goal, to whatever it was, I did not feel that I mattered enough to her.
There are all kinds of ways to let a person know that they are important to you. One of the things that I look for in a relationship is consistency. The second thing that I expect is verve, an enthusiasm for the relationship. But without consistency, the enthusiasm is meaningless.
Did I expect for her to be able to elucidate the kind of relationship that she looked to have with me when I arrived? Just going from the last quarter of 2007, I feel that she had more than enough time to be able to go beyond “we will see” once I arrived. It was not that I thought she would have said, “Oh Mark, I am so glad that you are here!! Now we can continue to have our romance untroubled by distance!” just as I did not expect her to say, “I am glad that you are here and now you can stop whining about not being in the right place for you and get to living your life!” either. While those are extremes, there is a lot of air between them and she could have placed her emotions anywhere within range.
I still remember when I had finally had enough of the pursuit. Some of the harsher things that she had reminded me about our relationship, things that had stood in the relief, had emerged to the forefront. Having already marshaled the energy to push myself to get here, I was not going to settle for what she offered. Sobered by previous disappointments greater than this, the loss of what never was something that she herself was more than willing to remind me of. We have never been anything but two ships sailing on the seas of life that happened to pass one another in our travels.