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  • Writer's pictureThe Lemon Chuck

Growing Pains

I've started and restarted this blog so many times. Not out of a desire for perfection but waiting for something to click. To feel right.

I've been encouraged to write for many years. More specifically, to write a book. That's way out of my wheelhouse (comfort zone), so here I am. Baby steps. (Does that make anybody else think of the movie "What About Bob?" or is it just me?)

I've regaled others with my wild tales because life has been pretty unbelievable: From growing up poor and spending a large chunk of my life living in a rougher area of the city to being a banker and the inherent shenanigans that come with that territory, to becoming a hypnotherapist and doing contract work for a provincial government. There's no shortage of "wtf" moments in my life. My life has consisted of a motley crew of characters, and the journey has been far from pretty. Though- it has been pretty funny, depending on how twisted your humour is. ;)

Most recently, my therapist encouraged me to write a book. Again, I'm pretty iffy on the whole book-writing thing, so I thought maybe blogging would be a way to get my toes wet, so-to-speak. The past two and a half years have been tumultuous, to put it lightly. And I realize that I'm not unique in saying that. The global pandemic would have been enough to shake things up, but like a lot of folks, I found myself facing one goddamn thing after another.

First, it started with the demise of my 13-year relationship. It was a brutal break-up, and was a terribly unhealthy relationship all along, so that shouldn't have come as a surprise. At the same time, my parents' 36-year marriage ended. If I'm being honest, that should have ended much sooner. My dad didn't take their separation well, and since we both found ourselves in these incredibly broken places, I moved back in with him. I was 36 years old, moving back in with my dad. They weren't kidding when they said, "life is what happens when you're busy making other plans."

My dad and I had a complicated relationship my entire life. I love him dearly, but we often struggled to get along. Especially when I was young. I knew that moving back in with him would pose many challenges. I had never seen him in the state he was in from his breakup, and I was genuinely afraid it would result in him taking his life. I had to remind myself that this arrangement was only temporary. We would only be living together until we got back on our feet.

It didn't take long for me to realize that something was amiss. Dad was off, but it was easily explainable by the steep decline of his mental health. He had been hospitalized the year prior (2019) and was diagnosed with COPD. I had also assumed that perhaps that condition was progressing. We would come to find out that he had Stage IV Esophageal Cancer. It had metastasized to his liver and lymph nodes. So, in the span of a few short months, we went from nursing broken hearts to facing my dad's demise. I became his caregiver immediately. In less than a year, I went from one major heartbreak to another- my dad died.

When I tell you I fell apart, that feels like a gross understatement. He's been gone for a year and a half and I am just now functioning through my grief. His brief battle was riddled with unthinkable horrors but also peppered with beautiful moments. As difficult as that time was (he was) if God themself were to say to me, "Hey, we need to send him back to re-live that, but it's going to be even worse this time, are you up for it?" I would say yes, a million times, yes. I would probably look that little shit right in his face and say, "Hey, fuck you, let's go." He would sigh and say, "love you too, kid" and then go on to be the most stubborn jackass known to humankind. I miss that fuckin' guy.

So here I am now: a haunted meat suit of stories. I hope you'll join me through these weird, sometimes wonderful, adventures and misadventures.

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