As of today, my son Gordon has been without his mother longer than he was with her. The length of time Amanda has been gone is now longer than the length of time we were a family of three. Sometimes it doesn’t feel like it’s been that long, but that dangblasted calendar tells me it’s almost three years. I have not said a word about it to G, but tonight, for the first time in a long time, he pulled out the Missing Mummy book for bedtime.
Today was my last day in broadcasting for a while, as far as I can tell.
I spent the past five years as Program Director at Newstalk 1290 CJBK in London, Ontario. And in recent years, I was also the noon-hour show host, afternoon news anchor, a commercial voice guy, TV news promo voice guy, and more.
Also in the past five years, I’ve bought a house, endured renovation mayhem, supported my wife through terminal cancer, lost my wife to cancer, raised the most awesome little boy ever so far, crashed a car, sold a car, bought a car, and hey I have a girlfriend now, too. (Yeah, we’re happy and it’s pretty awesome.)
Basically, I’ve been going non-stop since little dude was born. The sloth version of non-stop, admittedly, but non-stop.
My health requires attention. Wow, that’s the most passive way I could’ve written that, isn’t it?
I must pay attention to my health. That’s better. I’m fatter than ever, my cholesterol sucks, I’m prediabetic, my shoulders and knees feel like I was an extreme athlete at one point and I am certain I never was, and I was dangerously tired a lot of the time.
I’ve been on CPAP therapy for about a month and a half now, and it’s obviously helping some. But I need to be eating better and exercising. And I’ve been unable or too unwise to make time to do that. So I’m making time to do that.
I count my official start in broadcasting as early 1994, when I started at 680 News in Toronto. So that makes a nice round 25 years. I could, I suppose, also include five years of tremendously educational volunteer work at Rogers Cable 10 in Newmarket and call it 30, but 25 is enough of a landmark.
Five years of dramatic change in my personal and professional life can fly by like a flash of lightning in the hot summer sky, so I’m not going to pump up my service time to make a point.
I’m not sure what the point is, other than that I assure you this is not a rash move, a sudden reaction, an uncalculated risk, or a brilliantly devised strategy. It’s kind of open-ended by design.
I’ve been listening to the audiobook version of Neil Peart’s Ghost Rider: Travels on the Healing Road, which chronicles the former Rush drummer’s grief-fueled motorcycle journey following the death of his daughter in a car wreck and his wife from cancer.
The process he went through is inspiring me.
I am also buoyed by the successes of some friends and colleagues who also left the industry they once felt would be their lifelong dancing partner. I’m going to be drawing on their wisdom, and the wisdom of many more people I’ve yet to meet, and hopefully some folks I haven’t seen in too long.
I’m not looking for work right now. I’m going to spend the summer following some ideas I have for personal development and pursuing wisdom in a sector I’m imagining starting a business in. If it all sounds very fuzzy, that’s fine. I’ll be bringing it into focus, all in good time.
My thanks go out to the talented, passionate, hard-working people at CJBK and the many people throughout Bell Media who make the station work. It’s been my privilege to lead and serve for the past five years. I learned a lot. I tried hard. I wish everyone there great success. You were nothing but kind to me and I hope I was good to you, too. And, thanks to the listeners, even the ones who thought every thing I did was the Worst Thing Ever.
That’s about all I’ve got right now. I’m sure as soon as I click Publish, I’ll think of six more things I was intending to write about. But there’s always more to write about. That’s what makes life so exciting, isn’t it?
A certain measure of innocence
Willing to appear naive
A certain degree of imagination
A measure of make-believe
A certain degree of surrender
To the forces of light and heat
A shot of satisfaction
In a willingness to risk defeat
Celebrate the moment
As it turns into one more
Another chance at victory
Another chance to score
The measure of the moment
Is a difference of degree
Just one little victory
A spirit breaking free
One little victory
The greatest act can be
One little victory
A certain amount of resistance
To the forces of life and love
A certain measure of tolerance
A willingness to rise above