Sunday, August 24, 2008

The Apartment

Kim and I lived with Steve Martin in Soulard while she was pregnant. It was clear this was a bad arrangement. It was a 24hr a day parade of musicians in an out of the studio. Kim was used to a more stable, suburban environment. She’d sink into extreme bouts of depression concerning our new child’s environment.

My friend and skydiving buddy Tom told us we could move in down stairs from him. He had a 2 family flat even farther south in the city. Everything seemed to be falling into place.

We moved in, friends came to visit, and all was well with the world. Tom always had beer in the fridge for me. When I couldn’t pay rent he’d have me paint one of his rental properties or the trim around the top of our building.

My friend Nancy came to visit once and told me how happy she was that I was living the dream. Dream sounded a little funny coming from someone that was bragging about a dominatrix sexual experience she had just had on an elevator downtown. Man I miss her.

Dylan was born and I became a house husband. The two of us would hang out upstairs on Tom’s porch until Kim came home from work. Dylan even had his own miniature porch chair. Eventually Chloe was born.

One St. Patrick’s Day Kim and I were meeting friends of hers at West Port. As we were going in to The Train Wreck Saloon we got news someone had broken into our apartment. We went home immediately.

A pillow case was missing along with all my import CDs. All the fun electronics were missing as well as Kim’s jewelry. This included her wedding ring and her father’s high school ring. In retrospect I find it funny she was wearing the engagement ring that took a year and a half to pay off but not the inexpensive wedding ring.

Our home was robbed two more times after that and Kim said, “I’m moving back to the county.”

We lived in her folk’s rehabbed basement for a month. My spirits became very low.

While we were there Tom put in an alarm system. Kim agreed to move back if we could get a dog. We returned to find a large brass door knocker that read, “The Udells.”

Tom and I finished putting in the alarm system. We tripped something that had the apartment flooded with cops wielding guns.

Kim found a dog at the shelter that was one day from being destroyed. I had always wanted a dog named Fido. Fido must be the male spelling. The paperwork spelled it Pheideaux. Somehow this didn’t stick and she became Sheba.

Kim never liked the dog. It threw up a lot. We were in the apartment less than a year with her. We moved to the county where the dog almost immediately disappeared. Kim’s dad took the dog to some magical place where dogs ran free while I was away. Tom’s next door neighbors wanted her but she was nowhere to be found. I lost respect for both Kim and her father over this. I realized later they were capable of throwing away family members without conscience.

Pictured are Tom, Dylan rehearsing, and Dylan with Sheba. He still misses her.


tonypatti said...

Turns out it is an old family tradition on my Dad's side to throw out family members at will. My dad did it with his brother, and my grandma did it with her brother, and for a long time my dad and my brother did it, too.

People who regard other people as 'things' - things that annoy them - rather than persons tend to do this more than people like us. The complexity of being a human is all too obvious to me.

Valerie Pennington said...

This story makes me so sad.
Sad that you had to go through a marriage like that (sounds a lot like my marriage minus children). Sad for Dylan and Chloe - 2 more children of divorce being shuttled back and forth between Mommy and Daddy's houses (I've been there and so have you). Sad for Sheba - animals puke, they just do. They're not doing it personally. I'm even sad for Kim who is so fearful of anything she doesn't consider "normal". I'm happy for me - I got a great man out of all this.
Welcome home, my love.
P.S. I think animals can sense when someone in the household doesn't like them - it makes them feel . . . um . . . unwell.

...Sharon said...

What a great looking dawg! She has such a sweet face. What a sad story. I hate it when folks adopt dogs for the sole purpose of being a door stop. Dogs simply love to be loved. No other creature has evolved as quickly and efficiently as the dog.

Dog spelled backwards is goD.

...Sharon said...

Hey, you know you can "rent a dog" from Stray rescue for FREE!

Seriously. Check out their website...

They realized they have a lot of wonderful dogs who would LOVE to be loved for any period of time and then there are folks who only have time to share with a hound (of love) over the weekend. You can start with viewing them online. Everything you'll need - leash, toys, dishes and food are supplied. They'll work with you if your days fall during the week as well. Should this dog work out - you can get the same pup each weekend. Then, maybe moving in together permanently won't be so difficult.

Yeah, sounds like Stray Rescue's thought process is evolving at the same rate as the dogs'!

Anonymous said...

I never have, nor will I ever forgive those people. That was my dog she had no right to take a boys dog from him. That dog was family. Maybe that explains the strained tension between us if. If she could do that to poor defenseless Sheba, whats to keep her from doing that to me.

Tony Patti said...

Dylan, we forgive others because it makes us happier than if we wallow in resentment. The real horror in life is being imprisoned in negative feelings towards others.

You only get one mom, and even if she makes it difficult for you, the best way to be happy in life is to find the things in her that make you happy and avoid the things that make you sad. This is easier said than done, but an open loving heart is its own reward, and only benefits you in your quest for peace and happiness.

Another important fact that helps is knowing that your resentment only gives them the power to hurt you more. You can increase or reduce that power by increasing your hurt feelings and giving them all the power, or by forgiving them for doing things they don't understand, and taking it totally away from them.

This has nothing to do with dishonesty. The more resentment you lose, the easier it is to be honest about this stuff with those that hurt you. When you have let go a little bit, you can talk about issues like this without yelling or lying to avoid the pain from surfacing, because in your heart, you've decided to let go of the pain.

Believe me, I have decades of experience dealing with parents who have hurt me out of sheer selfishness in ways like this, and it works. But give yourself as much time as it takes for it to work itself out. As a strategy for happiness, it's a long term thing. It won't happen instantly, but a little at a time.