The Ark

Whatever floats your boat...

Today, against my better judgment, I watched the live feed coming
from the commencement at the university where I worked for 18 years.

That was my last job, where I became ill, and had to quit on disability
in Dec-1999. I was the Photojournalist for the university. A wonderful
and very challenging job which required me to cover almost every possible
activity and event that took place, both on an off campus. I got to meet
and photograph many famous people including three Presidents, Billy Joel
w/Christie Brinkley and daughter Alexa, (as in his song 'The Down'easter Alexa').
I even did a family album for them. So many more including Harry Belafonte,
Leonard Bernstein, Cokie Roberts, Dith Pran ('The Killing Fields'), Al Roker,
Bill Cosby, Itzhak Perlman, (ok, so I'm name dropping).

But while I was watching the live feed, I didn't expect to see some close-ups
of the Photographer working who replaced me..that was weird. It so happens
she was a friend of mine for years, and I had lunch with her when she took
the job in 2000. She felt guilty about replacing me, and wanted my approval,
which I freely gave her. Still, it was weird to see, in the window of my laptop,
someone doing the job I did and loved all those years ago. Commencement
was always one of the busiest and most prepared for, days of the year. I miss
my career..mostly I miss the person I was before i became ill.

Views: 4

Comment by photo2010 on May 24, 2010 at 9:03am
Ruth, I do find small positive places in my life. The Ark is one of them. I am allowed this safe harbor to place my thoughts and feelings, good or bad, and don't have to smother them. You may not have noticed, but I've been placing comments on other people's vlogs, trying to be as supportive as I can. That is something I had stopped doing for awhile. A positive baby step. I have to correct you on something. Living in chronic pain for 22 years and losing my mobility HAS changed me and i daresay would change most people. I can't walk to my car and go where I want, when I want, HOWEVER I have kept my car, hoping for the day I can drive again. Trust me, if i was not a positive person, I wouldn't be here anymore. Please also remember, I am still in the early stages of grieving, and we all grieve differently. I know you understand that.

I greatly appreciate what you say, I am looking for positives. Thank you for your kindness.

Comment by JustAnotherUserName on May 24, 2010 at 9:35am
Hey Kevin...I deleted my comment before yours showed up...! Upon reflection, I just wasn't comfortable keeping it here--I was afraid I overstepped. You know I wish you well--but I've seen others in my particular position choose a different path and they remain stuck in an unhappy cycle. I don't want that for you.

Anyway, as always, lots of love coming to you from over here!

Comment by photo2010 on May 24, 2010 at 10:59am
Ruth my friend, i know you meant well, and always do. I wake up every day missing my Mother. I miss hearing her spoon tapping her coffee cup from her room next to mine. I miss her calling my name to ask how I'm doing, and asking her the same. For some reason the mornings are the hardest. Was it like that for you? It just all seems to hit me in the morning, though it can happen anytime. Family members visit and lay out a laundry list of
what I should be doing. They have little to no understanding of how I'm feeling. Yes I have help, I'm literally going broke paying for it, but I need it. I'm scared I'll end up in a nursing home. I'm going to try to take out a home equity loan to pay bills. Do you know how those work? I wanted to do a reverse mortgage, but I'm told you have to be 62 and I'm 58. I'm scared. But, even with all that, I have a feeling deep inside that I'll be alright. My parents survived many many trials and I was there for many of them.

Grieving, like life, is a process. I'm processing a lot right now. Thank you for caring.

Comment by NatureJunkie on May 24, 2010 at 4:03pm
I love my job, too, and I would miss it deeply if I were forced out of it for any reason. I know that I will have to leave it someday, and I found myself wondering just recently who would pick up my reins when I have to lay them down. Someone who will love it as much as I do? I can only hope so. There's a lot of joy to be had from doing this job well and I hate to see joy go wasted.

From many things you've written before, Kevin, I know you miss your career. I'm glad your "replacement" was someone you approved of, and I hope she's loving the job as much as you did.
Comment by photo2010 on May 24, 2010 at 4:30pm
NJ, thank you for your understanding comment. Leaving my job was a decision made for me by my health. I did it for as long as was physically possible, perhaps too long considering the stressful nature of my work. In fact, i would have left sooner, but I was "misinformed" about the nature of my disability benefits. A long story I won't go into now.
May I ask what kind of work you do?
Comment by NatureJunkie on May 24, 2010 at 6:44pm
Kevin, I'm an academic advisor at a university.
Comment by photo2010 on May 24, 2010 at 8:42pm
NJ, ah, I think I knew that..forgive my poor memory.


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