Posts Tagged ‘Travel’

These terms aren’t new. I have thought about these often. I relate them more so to most individuals I know. And me too. I fully admit that I can be selfish, being a little older now I don’t have the luxury of using ignorance as an excuse for my selfishness. It is during my time here in the UAE that I have noticed these terms coming up more often.

Everyone who has travelled here for work have different reasons. Financial, Emotional some don’t have any other choice. What ever the reason people seem to come with a certain degree of ‘expectations’. I have noticed that some seem to think that they are ‘owed’ things by the company that has hired us. Luxurious accommodation,  the best position in the company, etc, etc. For the life of me I can’t understand this at all. I have not idea in our contracts where it states this at all!

For me it’s definitely a mixture of Selfishness and Ignorance. Thinking about themselves and ignoring everything and everyone else. They don’t seem to take the time to sit back and think about their actions and /or the ramifications of their actions. I refuse to believe that ALL people of a certain country, that will go unnamed, are self-centered, egotistical, dickheads. But there seems to be a large percentage here at the moment. I guess it’s easier to notice as the large majority of people here working for our company are from this particular country.

I understand completely that your responsibility should be towards your own health and well-being and that of your family and friends. Most likely in that order too. But does it have to be at the expense of others? In my opinion it doesn’t. Some people are just used to being aggressive to get their own way. That has never been my style. Yes, it has been said to me before that I am too soft. And, yes I would tend to agree. But, I have always ‘stood up’ for myself and others when I have deemed them important enough to do so. But again that is my relaxed nature. Some people are always ‘tense’, always ready to switch from ‘normal’ to ‘abnormal’ at the drop of  the preverbial hat. I’m sure we could go into depth about the whole nurture and nature debate, which me and my mate BB discussed recently. It was a good discussion. We agreed that some people are just ‘born that way’. Can’t argue with genetics. Then others behavior is learnt. We both used the example of our eldest children. The idea of disciplining your children from an early age which will help develop them into positive teenagers. This is reflected in my daughter M1. She is almost 16, but only rarely flashes her teenage angst that she is meant to have now. True she lives with her mum so I don’t get the full brunt of any ‘attitude’ she may have, but I have only every seen my daughter through a tantrum when she was 3-4years old. That was the last time. And the reason for this, I believe, was me dragging her through the mall we were in all the way home, putting her in her room, telling her off too and leaving her to ‘think about it’. Now to be honest I don’t think she fully understood what was wrong, but the fear that was created by me raising my voice at her was enough to ‘fear me’. I know that some people would be asking ‘why would you want your children to fear you?”. Good question. Here’s my thoughts behind that. I have rarely had to discipline my daughters (again the fact that they live with their mum adds to this) and so I am rarely angry or aggressive around them. So when they DO see me get angry or upset with them, they both know that it is serious and whatever they were doing needs to stop. My eldest daughter is still brought to tears if she knows her mum is going to tell me about some type of misbehavior. It’s a strange feeling knowing that your children love you but at the same time can fear you. It’s not a feeling I enjoy. But it is good to know that if there was some type of imminent threat to them that my voice alone would make them listen and react possibly saving their lives or the lives of others. That’s my reason behind the fear.

Slight digression, but I think you can see where I’m coming from. I guess this does cross over into my blog about the master and the slave in some sense. I would often treat A like this. Reprimanding her like a child if she didn’t do what I thought was the right way to do things, etc, etc. You can re-read my past posts to see all that.

Selfish or Ignorant, maybe a mixture of both. I guess it depends on who you are and where your from. Hopefully not from this one particular country…Jokes, two of my best friends here are from there…such a cliché comment.

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I have tried to keep my word. Truly I have. But I have broken promises. In particular I have broken my promise to blog at least 3 times a week. I have stated before that this was going to be a huge challenge for me. In the past few weeks it has. My new life here in the middle east has taken over. There have been many chores to do and many more people to help.

Of course I feel bad about breaking my promises. But in my heart I know that there has been a reason for not posting. The hearbreak of losing A had been slipping away gradually. Each day I had been feeling better and not thinking about her as much. Which of course was positive and just proved to me that coming here was the best decision I’d made. As I haven’t been posting these feelings came rushing back. I think It had something to do with the fact it was her birthday this week AND it was her graduation. The more I thought about this the more the old feelings came flowing back…it was tough. Well it still is tough right now.

Yesterday I moved into my new apartment. It is very nice. I crashed out on my new couch and had a dream about A. I haven’t had a dream about her since we broke up. It was a very sad yet vivid dream too. I was in my bed at home tossing and turning in my sleep calling out her name. It woke me from my real sleep. My heart hurt. I still miss her very much. I still wonder what she is doing and how she is. But I try not too as it just brings back those heart pains.

God has been very, very good to me during my time here. He has introduced me to some wonderful people and has made me challenge myself on a personal level, forcing me to do things that I wouldn’t usually do (nothing illegal or anything against my morals either). My patience has been severally tested here by various situations and people. I think these heart pains are just him reminding me about what I need to keep doing to receive such good will.

So, I’m going to take my friend’s advice, that’s you AB and go back to blogging once a week. This is not meant to be a chore or something I hate doing. It is meant to help me. Help me become a better person. Help me heal and even help me heal others form their own pain and demons. Almost six months gone even with the broken promises.

So I typed up a seemingly short blog just 1 minute  ago. Pressed publish TWICE and nothing happened. So here I am on Arrival part2. Let’s see how much I can remember!

I sit here looking out of my hotel window in Abu Dahbi, 8 floors above the sandy metropolis. And I wonder to myself “How the heck did I get here?” Not only was it the breakup of A and I but it was also the motivation I had to move on and make positive changes in my life. All part of the master plan to heal myself and hopefully become a better version of myself. D 2.0.

I have been skyping and face timing my daughters almost everyday. Getting use to the 9 hours time difference we have separating us. It has been great. I know I would’ve found things much harder without this face to face communication. They are a constant reminder to me about what I need to do while I am here. I need to make sure that I achieve my goal of building a positive future for myself so that my daughters can have an even more positive future. I know that being here and make certain sacrifices will help me achieve this. And the longer I have been here the easier I have been able to see this.

My arrival here has been a long time coming. All those following my blog know that. I realize that my journey to self-healing has just begun too.

What is funny for those of you who know A is that one of the first people I met here is from the UK, Blonde and LOVES animals. This of course makes sense as this describes A perfectly. I laughter with CM (that’s her initials) about this as we had a deep and meaningful conversation about this. I know, already pouring my heart out. It felt good to let her see my honesty and integrity. I feel she could see that I wasn’t trying to look for sympathy, she did actually ask why I came here and when I was vague about it she asked why again. I had nothing to hide. Open book and all. I’m sure over the next few months she will feel comfortable enough to share her story too.

Things right now are pleasant and I don’t have as many heart pains as I have had previously. I still think about A a lot. Maybe 50% of my day. Which I promise you is a dramatic fall! I still love her and miss her and I probably always will. I’m just working on increasing the size of my heart so I can fit someone else in. My hearts pretty big already though, but does get a little bruised sitting on my sleeve all day. God’s helping though. I would’ve had made it this far without him!

The book I have been reading has been inspirational. It’s funny when you find a book that actually makes a lot of sense. And not in an airy fairy way either. It makes VERY good sense. Always helps when they use REAL world examples.

One recent chapter I read was about fear. It discussed one ladies journey into become the “Queen” of self-help writers.

She talked about her own fears and how ‘pushing’ through them she was able to have a very successful life and help many others around the world.

Fear has been a motivator for me.

Back in 2000 I came up with my own quote (I never googled it back then so it could’ve already been taken). It’s simple; “The motivation to succeed, is the fear of failure”. I guess the has been my mantra since then. I don’t want to leave this world singing my “shoulda-coulda-wouldas”. I want to leave this world saying “Did it-Done it-Won it”. It is this fear that keeps me going. For many other people it’s their own fears that stop them. It’s a very large roadblock for them.

I have blogged here before about obstacles; emotional and physical. With out a strong support system e.g; friends and whanau these obstacles can be difficult to get around. Being a success and a strong male role model for my daughters and others has been a part of my own motivation. This is all a part of the journey too. Identifying my fears, harnessing them and conquering them.

I fear death. Like most people as we get older we start to understand our own mortality and the mortality of the ones we love. heading overseas this has been one of my biggest fears. Not my own death, but the death of my daughters, whanau or friends.

I fear for my daughters not growing up to have happy and wonderful lives. I want them to be able to say to their friends now and in the future that their dad was the most positive, truthful and loving dad in the world. That the sacrifices he made when we were younger have helped make us “good” people.

I am scared of anything that has more legs or eyes than me.

I am scared of heights.

I am scared of closed spaces.

AND I think that would be about it.

I think the first two I am most fearful of as I have very limited control over how these things pan out. Unless I lock my daughters away for the rest of their lives and I become good friends with the Grim Reaper. I guess that’s what fear is really. Not having control over something else. Not being able to predict what’s going to happen. Fearful of the unknown. You know now why some people are constantly looking for ‘the meaning of life’. They get sick of their own mundane lives and just wonder ‘what it all means’.

You have to let go. You have to realize you can’t control everything all the time. You have to embrace your fear and push through. Only through great adversity can great change occur. Thats what I am hoping my own journey will accomplish. I’m letting go now.

Over the past few weeks there has almost been a traffic fatality everyday. No exaggeration either. From minor accidents where people have been injured, but not critically. To full on accidents with terrible fatalities. My brother and nephew had a close call with their car trailer and the WIND of all things, smashing their car into a medium strip. EAC almost got hit by a bus, literally stepping off the curb and then she almost got hit again, while driving, turning into another street. We both agreed. There has to be a reason for all these ‘close calls’.

With me being so ‘open’ to everything happening around me I started to wonder. Maybe they were little signs from God about ‘travel’? Maybe he was making sure I paid attention while driving around. It did help cause I had a lady pull out in front of me while I was going through a roundabout. She just looked at me blankly with a “why is that guy looking at me in a funny way? I’m sure his car can magically ghost through my car!” And even today another lady almost pulled out in front of me and my daughters, with the exact same look on her face!

There has to be a message!

Stating the obvious would just be blind and of course extremely sexist!

What I am praying is that none of this is related to my own impending departure.

As we all know there is not much one can do when you are flying 50K above the ground. If you hit something OR get hit by something that high in the air you can pretty much kiss yourself goodbye.

On the other hand I would hate it to be a message relating to my friends and whanau too. I have been telling those close to me to drive carefully on the roads and keep and eye out. This blog is another way for me to do that. PLEASE everyone I love, take care out on the roads…I just have a real bad feeling about all these close calls. I guess it’s just peace of mind really. My gut feeling hasn’t been wrong recently.

Well my patience and faith have paid off.

I am officially flying to my new job in the UAE this Sunday. Finally!

The thought of irony has not been mis-spent on me regarding my previous post “Departing”.

It has been almost 4 months now since A and I broke up. For very, very long months for me. Without the support of my whanau, friends and the Mamaku Crew I don’t think I could’ve emotionally lasted this long. Heartbreak can do that to you.

After waiting so long and being prepared to leave 6 weeks ago, I sill feel in a weird purgatory state. The Mamaku Crew have been putting the guilts on me. Trying to get me to stay and work with them at BC. I laugh. I laugh not because I find it funny. I laugh because I feel uncomfortable with the love that they have shown towards me. Friends who I had forgotten about AND friends whom I never knew existed. I have never been comfortable at receiving praise. Which is probably why I find it so easy to dish praise out to others. Go figure.

I have slowly been texting friends about my leaving date. It’s funny how most of them know me so well. No “lets have a leaving party”, that’s just not me. Plus I only look at this job as a temporary departure. Not permanent. That’s how I promote it to my two beautiful young daughters too. CB and I had a wonderful conversation last week about my journey. She wanted to understand, in her mind, how I could leave my daughters. She shared her own experience with her father. It made sense to me then why she felt the way she did. M1 my eldest daughter is turning 16 this year. A very sensitive age for teenagers as we all know. What some people don’t realize is that M1 is very ‘different’ from most pre-adult teens. Her and I have always been strongly connected. Ever since I helped cut her umbilical cord and wrapped her in a cloth gauze. Bringing her out into the thrall of waiting grandparents and friends announcing her name with pride. Hiding the tears I had just spent in the birthing room with her beautiful mother. I swore to myself and God that I would never let anything stop me from being the best father I could be to her. For the majority of her life, I have managed to keep my word. Not all the time, I’m definitely no Saint. But I know that as far as fathers go, I’m not bad.

I didn’t want to share this with CB at the time. I wanted to listen to her reasoning. I wanted to understand her story. My mate AU had a similar story with his father. I think my friends sometimes forget that I have been a father for almost 16 years. And if there is one thing that I know about in this world it’s M1.

My departure is not only important to my own self-development. It is also important for my daughter’s futures. I have always tried to live close to them. To make sure I could be there when they needed me. I have felt in the past few years their mother has done her best to keep me away from their day-to-day lives. I have been more like and ATM than anything else to her. Well that’s how it feels to me. I believe she still holds a lot of resentment towards me. If you’ve read my blogs you can understand why. So I always ‘briefly’ express my disappointment, take a deep breath and send her positive blessing. Seriously. That’s what I do.

Someone who seems to be deeply effected by my departure is EAC. Her and I have formed a very strong connection. It’s like she was meant to be my sister that I wanted mum and dad to have when I was 11 (True story!!). We get each other. We understand each other mentally and spiritually. We both have very strong communication skills. We are both open and honest. We both trust each other. I joked with her one time that we were like Brandon and Brenda from the REAL 90210. She being Brenda of course. Maybe that’s why we have a ‘soul connection’. Maybe. Possibly. When we had to say goodbye on Wednesday she was off to her Yoga class. We had just had a great chat and already acknowledged that saying goodbye is a difficult process for her. I laughed (see 5th paragraph). I (brother/sister) love her. She knows that. God has brought us together on purpose. And it is no coincidence her husband is someone I love (brother love) too. EAC blogged about her friends and family being like a ‘web’. Connected by threads. Something like that. I agreed. And if I agree then ALL my friends and whanau are part of the web too. Connected forever.

I do wonder though if A knows anything about my departure. I really don’t want her to know. I don’t want her to feel that I am doing this to make her feel bad. I’m doing this for me. I’m doing this for my daughters. And I’m doing this to heal my broken heart. I’m departing from who I was. Who I had become. 2014, the Six Million Dollar Man returns…maybe with a wife?