The questioning of career, life, family, love follows grief (taking a week off of blogging)

Two days ago Maryam told me that she always wanted a BMW (we've been planning a car purchase for a while cause her Toyota was starting to show its age).

So, last night, what did I do? I bought her one. A BMW 325i. By far the wackiest, and scariest, and most irrational purchase I've ever made. Why? Because my alimony is coming to an end this summer (4.5 years of paying more than $1,100 per month, and that's not including child support). But, this is not usual behavior for me. What brought it on? My mom's stroke and death reminded me that life is temporary. She reminded me that it's important to have fun while you're here. Even if you are a workahaolic. Smell the roses and all that.

I might regret such an impetuous purchase (particularly after we get the bill). It is expensive. And wild. But it is such a nice car. And Maryam deserves it. She stayed with me even when I'd blog late into the night. If I'm lucky, she'll let me drive it once in a while. And I am lucky. Heheh! Actually, I was totally shocked when the bank approved the purchase.

I am totally fortunate to be in that position. Something we often forget in the midst of wild wealth that we have here on the West Coast (over the weekend a Mercedes SLR rolled by, that's a car that costs $700,000 to buy, which is $660,000 more than the one I bought Maryam). This is an unreal world. Most of the world lives on $2 a day. I forget that a lot of times. But I just said the heck with it.

Tonight, though, I find I'm questioning everything about my life. Am I doing the right things? Treating people well enough? Doing enough to improve the world?

What do I want to do career wise? I've had some wild opportunities thrown at me recently. Should I consider them? For what reason? What's the value I add to the world? Can I do more? Are there things that I'd love to do more than taking a camcorder around Microsoft and representing Microsoft to developers? In five years, where do I want to be? Who do I want to be?

What kind of father should I be? I haven't been a good one, all truth be told. My son is hurtling into his teenage years. What kind of role model should I be? How could I get more involved in his life? He's coming to stay with us next month. What should we do together? Yeah, the Xbox is all primed, but it's time to do more than just play gadgets. Maybe take him camping.

How do I want to be a better husband? What is important to me in our home life?

Oh, my mom's sister? Three of her siblings died when they were 66 (including my mom). She's 65 and is really worried. What would you do if you knew you had a year to live? I answered myself "I'd buy Maryam a BMW and we'd drive around having fun." Which led to my impulsive behavior last night. Can someone remind me to keep me away from expensive toys during times of grief?

Tonight I talked with Vic Gundotra, the guy who hired me into Microsoft. He told me how times like this in life (when you lose someone important to you, or meet tragedy) bring into hyper focus what's important. I'm not so sure. I liked life four weeks ago when I thought I had it all figured out.

Now all I have is questions.

Anyway, I'm going to take a week off to ponder these questions, and more, get some exercise, and take care of my mom's affairs (she designated me as the one she wanted to take care of her estate).

I thought about continuing to blog, but really, there's times that one just needs to go sit quietly in the middle of Yellowstone or another park and pick the lint out of your bellybutton and ponder life's questions. This is one of those times.

Hey, got some answers? Give 'em up! Heheh. See ya back here on about June 4.

208 thoughts on “The questioning of career, life, family, love follows grief (taking a week off of blogging)

  1. I hope things are going better for you now that time has passed. I was actually caught by the title of your blog, and thought I’d read and post comment. This is only the second time I’ve done this.
    I think that when you are at a point in your life you can really sit back and enjoy it, then do so! If it’s not hurting you or anybody else, then do it!
    My husband and I have four kids 6 and under, so something like buying a brand new car would’nt go well for us, but God willing, we will live to see our kids out of the house and then THE FUN BEGINS!! : )
    Even at that, I find myself being too impulsive sometimes to because my husband works for our local police department here in Lebanon, and even though it’s a small town (14,000 people) I find myself worrying sometimes that he may not be here tomorrow. Things can go from normal to erratic in a matter of seconds at a police department.
    Anyway, you are not alone with your thoughts and questions. *Everyone* has them, even Christians, who relatively “know where they are going” but it’s still scary to think about all that will go on that you could miss out on. I think the biggest thing is that life will still go on no matter if you are here or not. I can’t bear the thought of missing *any* of my childrens’ milestones if I happen to die. And the fact is, life would still go on. I think that’s the most unsettling thing of all.

  2. I hope things are going better for you now that time has passed. I was actually caught by the title of your blog, and thought I’d read and post comment. This is only the second time I’ve done this.
    I think that when you are at a point in your life you can really sit back and enjoy it, then do so! If it’s not hurting you or anybody else, then do it!
    My husband and I have four kids 6 and under, so something like buying a brand new car would’nt go well for us, but God willing, we will live to see our kids out of the house and then THE FUN BEGINS!! : )
    Even at that, I find myself being too impulsive sometimes to because my husband works for our local police department here in Lebanon, and even though it’s a small town (14,000 people) I find myself worrying sometimes that he may not be here tomorrow. Things can go from normal to erratic in a matter of seconds at a police department.
    Anyway, you are not alone with your thoughts and questions. *Everyone* has them, even Christians, who relatively “know where they are going” but it’s still scary to think about all that will go on that you could miss out on. I think the biggest thing is that life will still go on no matter if you are here or not. I can’t bear the thought of missing *any* of my childrens’ milestones if I happen to die. And the fact is, life would still go on. I think that’s the most unsettling thing of all.

  3. It true at times of grief when you loose someone near and dear to you. you cant help but to sit back and want to watch the world go by, contemplate your navel, or what ever. Time seems to fill a void left in your heart, where you summise, and catorgorise your own existence, into slots, of life ,love, wealth, family etc, and so forth. What we have to remember though is we are loved by those who know us and care, if they didnt care they would not be there, life is to short, live each day as it comes, do with it what you will, be happy and enjoy your life and family after all is said and done, those dearly departed from us would want nothing less

  4. It true at times of grief when you loose someone near and dear to you. you cant help but to sit back and want to watch the world go by, contemplate your navel, or what ever. Time seems to fill a void left in your heart, where you summise, and catorgorise your own existence, into slots, of life ,love, wealth, family etc, and so forth. What we have to remember though is we are loved by those who know us and care, if they didnt care they would not be there, life is to short, live each day as it comes, do with it what you will, be happy and enjoy your life and family after all is said and done, those dearly departed from us would want nothing less

  5. Robert, I would like to say don’t worry about it, your probably just like the x-man Longshot. With a pure hearts intention everything works out, even the longest shot. But I know I think about stuff like that myself.

    None of us probably have to, but we still do, and THAT’S what tells us that we are on the right track.

    Good luck, love that your are sharing it with the world. Maybe we can’t excel all the time, but if we manage to step up and save the day and sweep some people of their feet every now and then, we don’t have to worry.

    André Hedetoft
    Movie-geek
    Blogging about geek porn over at http://www.andrehedetoft.com/geekporn

  6. Robert, I would like to say don’t worry about it, your probably just like the x-man Longshot. With a pure hearts intention everything works out, even the longest shot. But I know I think about stuff like that myself.

    None of us probably have to, but we still do, and THAT’S what tells us that we are on the right track.

    Good luck, love that your are sharing it with the world. Maybe we can’t excel all the time, but if we manage to step up and save the day and sweep some people of their feet every now and then, we don’t have to worry.

    André Hedetoft
    Movie-geek
    Blogging about geek porn over at http://www.andrehedetoft.com/geekporn

  7. Life is short, enjoy your money and the joy that Maryam
    is experiencing driving when she’s driving her new BMW. I purchased a new Lexus, and it’s a wonderful experience. We deserve it!

  8. Life is short, enjoy your money and the joy that Maryam
    is experiencing driving when she’s driving her new BMW. I purchased a new Lexus, and it’s a wonderful experience. We deserve it!

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