well thanks and I assure you it's all true. And yes, I've had some pretty shitty things thrown at me in my life. Parents being killed when I had just turned one, raised by a widowed grandmother who died right before I turned 15. Sexually abused by our housekeeper woman when I was 12. Complete mental breakdown when I was 14. Teen years living in poverty, deprivation, drugs, sex, alcohol, bouncing from place to place with no family or even a real friend. Yes, there is a lot to tell and I've even thought about writing a book about it. But the thing I want people to take from my story, which I may share fully one day, is not to pity me but to be inspired that no matter how beat down this world can get you, you can always rise up. I'm 39 yrs old now, have a loving wife of 15 years, two beautiful children, a nice big house in the nicest neighborhood in our town and a job that affords me the ability to give my family a good life. I could have let life beat me down and it came very close more than once. but I chose to keep fighting. That's what I want people to take from what I've been through... keep fighting.
Man, I think this beats "The Astonishing Tales of Costanza."
As for my gift, it was fricking horrible at first, but it was one of those "meaning" gifts. It turned out to be great.
One Christmas when I was 18, my mom gave me this little present all wrapped up with a bow. I opened it up and it was one of her mixing bowls from the kitchen, filled with cotton balls.
Im sitting there thinking, "is this some kind of a sick joke?" My mom always gives awesome gifts. I set it aside and she kept asking me what was in the box...she must have asked about 15 times. I chalked it up as her way of telling me that I was a hellraising rebel and didn't deserve a christmas present this year.
It took me about 20 minutes to realize that she had gotten me tickets to the Cotton Bowl (when we played Texas in 2002), and the bowl full of cotton balls was her way of telling me, because she hadn't picked the tickets up from the person she bought them from yet.
After I made that little connection, it was a great present!
This post was edited on 12/11 at 4:44 pm