So, this time between cleaning up after Christmas wrapping paper and looking for aspirin to calm your thumping head, has given me pause to reflect upon my accomplishments and my failures over the past 12 months.
Accomplishment: I followed doctor’s orders and physical therapist’s instructions to make it to one year post-shoulder replacement surgery. There is still a way to go with stamina and strength, but all is good!
Accomplishment: I did manage to de-texture/smooth out and paint our living room and office area ceiling. I painted those same area walls with her new paint color choice, repaired and stained a section of rotted flooring by the back porch sliding door. Never mind I had procrastinated about these tasks for months prior.
Accomplishment: I mostly managed to stay out of Kim’s way as she darted around our home in preparation for Christmas events. Once again, she took care of interior decorating decisions while I limited myself to our home’s exterior.
Accomplishment: Speaking of our home’s exterior décor, I would be remiss if I did not mention the neighborhood victory that was Halloween. For the past few years, we were lucky to see three or four trick-or-treaters in costume. THIS year, over a dozen kids/teens showed up in costume. Oh yes, the yard decorations were modest, but effective.
Accomplishment: My participation in the (now) Annual Jazz-In-The-Park show, gig, concert was quite the success. Held upon The Drunken Goose Stage, at Small Mountain Street Tacos, on historic Cobblestone Row, in Medicine Park, fun was had by entertainers and the entertained.
Accomplishment: We drove to and back from Murfreesboro, Tennessee, for the wedding of youngest son, Ryan and (new) daughter-in-law, Victoria. No fuss, no muss, no accidents. All had an exciting time! Mom and Pops could not have been prouder and happier!!
Accomplishment: Played the International Fest again this year with my band Jelibred. Though I am the last original member, we still perform originals from our 28-year history. This was the final gig for this line-up.
Failure: I stepped back from taking part in events sponsored by numerous veteran organizations I have been part of for the last 17 years. I needed to concentrate on my own well-being. It still feels like I let down a lot of people.
Failure: I have six wonderful siblings. They, their spouses, and extended family members are delightful people. I do not see them often enough. THAT is my fault entirely. I hope to correct my behavior this year.
Failure: I have estranged myself from my middle son’s life. There are issues at hand that I do not care to divulge here. Let us just say I do not agree with a series of events in his life. I sure miss him, miss seeing him, and miss talking with him. THAT is my fault entirely. I hope to correct this situation — my behavior this year.
I shall now resign myself to sit around and wallow in my own self-pity.
Yeah, I will not be doing any of that…
I look forward to 2024 with renewed enthusiasm!
George Keck is an Army retiree, a drummer, and Lawton resident, off and on, since 1964.