The Smoking Baby???

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This video is making the rounds at an insane pace right now.  I’m absolutely disgusted and blown away by this thing.  I mean, I’m not even sure what to say about it all.

Don’t know what I’m referring to?  Check out this video…

This, my friends, is TWO YEAR OLD Ardi Rizal.  He apparently had his first cigarette at eighteen months.  He smokes TWO PACKS A DAY (yes…40 cigarettes).  His father gave him a cigarette when he was only 18 months old and now, apparently, he’s addicted.

“He cries and throws tantrums when we don’t let him smoke. He’s addicted. I’m not worried about his health…he looks healthy.” – Mohammed Rizal

This almost seems too unbelievable to be true.  If it weren’t for the video and the pictures, there would be no way in the world that I could ever believe this.

I smoked a 25-pack of cigarettes every single day for 16 years.  I’ve been smoke-free now for just over six years. I know the damage I’ve done to my body and I’m praying that it doesn’t come back to bite me in the ass as I grow older.

So to know that this douchebag gave a cigarette to his son…his 18-MONTH OLD BABY…and now whines because the child will throw tantrums if he doesn’t have a cigarette just makes my blood boil.

But the father isn’t the only one to blame here.  The mother is just sitting back and letting it all happen, too…

“He’s totally addicted. If he doesn’t get cigarettes, he gets angry and screams and batters his head against the wall. He tells me he feels dizzy and sick.” – Diana Rizal

SO DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT!!

Seriously…I’m just blown away at the idiocy of this family unit.  And I know they live in Indonesia, but you can’t blame where they live for their lack of intelligence. Surely to goodness just about anybody on the planet realizes that having a child smoke isn’t the healthiest thing in the world to do.

Can you believe this sh*t??

The Curfew

I’ve been going through some interesting self-analysis lately.

My father was a bit on the strict side. I can look back and see that I can appreciate what he was trying to teach me much of the time. And from looking back, there are a few stories that have popped back up into my head. One of them had to do with a curfew.

So I was probably in eleventh or even twelfth grade. I was 16 or 17 (it’s all a bit fuzzy) and I was normally the designated driver for my friends when we went out to parties on the weekend. My parents knew I didn’t drink too much (I still don’t) so they didn’t have major problems with me going out to parties as long as I was home on time.

One Friday night I was on the way home from a party. The curfew was midnight. I had enough time to get home and didn’t even think twice about how much time I actually had. As I was getting closer, I realized that I was cutting it a bit close. In my mind, though, what would a minute or two matter? The whole point of a curfew was to not abuse it and to make sure you’re home and build trust.

More than a couple of minutes and I can understand that trust being strained.

Okay, so I walked through the front door at…from my watch at least…midnight. I greeted the folks and didn’t think twice about it. In fact, I looked at what they were watching and noticed that the news had just started…literally seconds after they previewed the top stories for the evening.

“You’re late.”

“What?”

“You’re late.”

“What are you talking about? It’s midnight. The news just started.”

“Todd, you’re one minute late. I told you to be home by midnight. It’s 12:01am. Consider yourself grounded for the next week.”

I was absolutely flabbergasted.

“I’m sorry, but I don’t quite get this. I’m being grounded over being a minute late by your clock??”

“Yes. My clock is the only one that matters. Don’t be late again.”

Did I learn my lesson? Well…I’ve certainly tried to be on time ever since. I still think it was a bit excessive, though. I didn’t feel like I was trying to push the limits or the boundaries set by my parents, but they apparently did.

I think I’ve got more of these stories inside of me, and I expect them to come out sporadically over the coming weeks as I try to figure out why my past affects my present so much. I’m hoping this introspection helps me…because as I get older and happier in my life there still appear to be issues that prevent me from truly enjoying my happiness. The hope is that I can get this straightened out.

Tying Some Loose Ends

From what I’ve been told, there are a few “loose ends” I need to tie-up or update on.  So I suppose I should probably do it now…

Home....for now.

1. My house hasn’t sold. The financing for the buyer officially fell through last Thursday.  It really sucks, too, because I was starting to get very excited about the prospect of starting over again in a place of my own…in a place where I wouldn’t have to walk on eggshells…in a place where I would be the designer (although that’s not such a great thing).  So the house is back on the market.  I painted my front steps yesterday and I’ll be painting the back deck sometime this week so the hope is that it becomes just a bit more appealing to prospective buyers.  The problem is that the overall market is pretty much dead at the moment.  None of the dozen homes in my park have sold and there isn’t a whole lot available at the moment, anyway. So for now, I’m going to continue to plug along until something changes.

2. As of my last weigh-in, I was down 4 pounds in the latest “Biggest Loser” contest that started at work.  Or should I say…that I started at work.  I’m weighing-in again tomorrow so my hope is that I’m down another couple of pounds.  I didn’t eat much of anything while Ankle Biter was in the hospital last week, so while it’s not the healthiest way to go the hope is that I at least dropped down in weight a little bit.  I’m walking every day and drinking lots of water.  The only thing I’m not doing is eating as well as I’d like.  I’m not eating entirely UNhealthy, but I could be doing much better.  It’s just been two weeks of health-related stress with my son so I haven’t really had the chance to dive into this diet like I originally wanted to.  It’s always something, right?

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3. Ankle Biter’s doing great. After two stressful weeks, it looks like my son is getting back on track health-wise.  He was pretty zonked after getting his tonsils & adenoids taken out along with getting tubes in his ears a couple of weeks ago, but then he was hit pretty hard again with a skin infection in his ear that forced him back on an IV and into the hospital for another 48 hours.  As of last night, though, he seems to be almost back to 100%. And as tired as I am, I’m just extremely relieved that he’s feeling better.  Now, if only I could get him to take his medicine without it being a 4-alarm fire.

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4. Rugrat and I aren’t talking very much lately. I’m still sending her cards and pictures and I’ve left messages with her mom, but we haven’t talked on the phone in quite some time.  I don’t think she’s mad at me…and I probably should be calling every night until she gets on the phone.  But I understand our relationship.  She’s not as close with me as I’d like her to be, and so this is the relationship that we share.  It’s not a bad one…at least I don’t think it is…but it’s not the best, either.  It is what it is.  When we do talk, she’s quiet a lot but does want to come visit me.  So at the end of the day, I’m just going to keep doing what I’m doing…calling, sending cards & photos & eCards online…and making sure she always knows how much I love her. I truly believe that as she gets older, she’ll appreciate that I never forgot her or set her aside (well…at least not in the past few years since I finally grew up).

Hospitals & Busy Sunday Afternoons: The Weekend In Review

Please forgive me for not having a blog post up earlier today but it’s a holiday here in the Great White North and I’m still recovering from the 1-2 punch of Lost and Celebrity Apprentice last night (it ended locally at 12:30am).  Here’s a recap of the weekend’s events…

Ankle Biter making the most of his hospital stay.

The ex was tied-up all day long on Friday so I came into the hospital at 7am so she could go.  Thankfully, Ankle Biter remained in good spirits (as good as could be expected, anyway) and the two of us had a fun morning.  We played with his blocks and watched movies and laughed the entire time.   It was pretty much like this until about 11:30am, at which point the nurses came in to give him some drops for his ears.

The poor kid lost it.

He didn’t want to be touched or have the drops put in.  He cried and cried because he thought it would hurt.  Once it was over, he cried some more because it just felt uncomfortable and he hasn’t been able to distinguish discomfort with pain yet.  Eventually, that cry turned into a two-hour nap.

I was told at 3pm that they would put in one more antibiotic bag onto his IV and once it was empty in an hour, we should be good to go.  That was probably the hardest part out of the entire deal…waiting that last 60 minutes for the IV to empty out. It was torture.

Ankle Biter lost it one more time when they took the needle out of his hand.  I totally understood this one because I’m sure his hand was pretty sore.  It was a little funny, though…once the needle was out and the bandage was on his hand, he saw the dried blood on his hand and thought he had a bigger “boo boo” and started crying even harder.

Fun fun fun.

Ankle Biter (finally) ready to head home from the hospital.

At this point, we were all set to go and all that was left was for him to get dressed.  And for whatever reason, he didn’t want to get dressed and leave.  So we stayed until about 4:30pm when he finally got dressed and we got to head out of there.

Friday night was basically supper, a one-hour bath, and then bedtime. Thank goodness for that bath because he was beginning to stink (lol). 

On Saturday we went out to visit my folks at their campground.  We spent most of the day there and when we weren’t at the trailer, we were at the small playground where a lot of kids were playing.  Ankle Biter was almost 100% at this point…and I could see glimpses of my healthy, happy boy as he ran around the playground.  It was awesome to be able to see him smiling and running around again.

Bret Michaels - Celebrity Apprentice 2010

Yesterday we spent the morning inside even though it was a beautiful day.  He just wanted to watch movies and play with his blocks…so I wasn’t going to fight with him.  The ex showed up mid-afternoon (because I had him the entire day on Friday) and the rest of the day was spent mowing my lawn, staining my front steps, and then hunkering down for Lost and Celebrity Apprentice…though I have to say that I only caught a little bit of Celebrity Apprentice and really only wanted to see Bret Michaels win, which he did.  And honestly, how hated do you think Donald Trump would have been if he DIDN’T name Bret the Celebrity Apprentice??  I mean, I think he really wanted Holly Robinson Peete to win but he had to go with the popular vote on this one.  To see Bret limp out on stage was inspiring, too.  He simply HAD to win.

Lost was pretty great.  I loved the sappiness of the reunions (yes, I’m a sap at heart…sue me) and wasn’t disappointed with the “parallel universe is actually purgatory” storyline.  While a lot of answers were never really provided (really…what IS the purpose of that island??), they didn’t write it off as a dream-sequence and the entire 6-seasons were wrapped-up nicely with a heroic conclusion.

So that was my weekend.  Hopefully everybody had a good one, too.

Best Weekend Ever: The Anniversary

Who's happy?

Sunshine and I had a 2 month break last year.  Of course, that “break” was us actually breaking up.

I’m not going to re-hash things because the bottom line is that we both needed this time away.  We didn’t realize it at the time, but we look back now and we both agree that we could never possibly accept and embrace and appreciate what we share together now if we hadn’t realized what we had lost during that time period.

And while people may roll their eyes at this, both Sunshine and I truly believe that fate…or the universe…brought us back together.  We talked and that quickly escalated to me going to visit her again to see what could possibly happen next.

I’m so glad I did.

So please…take a few minutes and click the links below.  I recapped our reunion in four separate blog posts, and I’m hopeful that you’ll be able to feel my happiness from reading my words and feel our happiness by viewing our pictures.

Any time I feel like the long distance is an obstacle or that there are too many issues standing in the way of our happiness, all I have to do is think back to the best weekend of my entire life to realize that everything we go through is worth it.  WE are worth it.

Happy 2nd anniversary, Sunshine. We made it.

Best Weekend Ever: Part One

Best Weekend Ever: Part Two

Best Weekend Ever: Part Three

Best Weekend Ever: The Conclusion