Vulcan Stev's Database

It's a BLOG Captain, but not as we know it.

Which Direction Do I Go?

It’s no secret.  Ashya and I are planning on getting married sometime in the near future (ie within twelve months).  There are too many indicators that she and I are destined for each other.  She meets each and every one of the criteria I had prayed about that my next wife should have (including the bonus ones that I could live without).

We’ve been wondering about the time table for our eventual nuptials.  We’ve been concerned with the melding of two families, who’d have to move, which school system the boys would attend.  Typical stuff to be sure in this day and age, but we want to make sure that we do this right.

I had a good job here in Iowa.  She has a good job in Ozark country.  Soccer Dude and First Mate enjoy the schools they attend, likewise #48 Fan and the Pirate.  We weren’t entirely sure which direction the we were headed.

I make no secret about the fact that I believe prayer works.  We began praying for direction.  Today I got a shock.  My boss informed me that due to rising costs and falling revenue, my position was being eliminated.  I didn’t take it too well at first.  I packed my desk and left.

I notified family and friends.  There were tears, questions about what I’m gonna do, and promises of prayers and support.

The more I talked with my Ashya and my Dad, I began to realize that this piece of bad news has a VERY large silver lining.  I left on good terms with my boss.  He was very sorry to let me go.  I really liked my job and really didn’t want to leave.  God replied by having the job leave me.

So I will be looking for work in the Ozarks.  Why?  Ashya already has a good job and there is no reason for her to leave it.  My house in NE Iowa is to small for the combined family.  We found a nice house big enough for all of us in her neck of the woods (literally woods). 

So, I’m updating my resume and portfolio.  If you have any freelance graphic design work you need done don’t hesitate to give me a holler.  Things are gonna be a little tough but we’ll make it.

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September 30, 2010 Posted by | Life near an Iowa Cornfield, Vulcan Stev Family Journey | , , , , , , | 3 Comments

I’m not fishing yet.

Chilly WillyRegular readers of this blog are aware of the fact that two months ago my wife passed after an extended battle with breast cancer.  I’ve been coping with the aftermath of her passing (paying off her debts, hospital bills, incurred expenses, etc.).  While I’ve been doing this, I’ve also been back at work during one of the busiest points of the year.

Because I’m back at work I’m left with one day during the work week to get the 9-5 M-F stuff done.  Yes my boss would gladly give me some extra time to accomplish these things, but I’m the ad man for a small town Iowa paper.  I have deadlines to meet and if I don’t get my job done the paper has no advertising.

In the past two months, I have been coming to grips with the fact that  my wife is not coming back home.  She has been healed of pain and has finished her fight.  As much as I’d like to pretend she’s away at a conference and will be coming back, she’s not going to walk through the door.

It’s tough.  I don’t have anyone to snuggle up against at night.  I don’t have anyone to sit listen to how good or bad my day at work was.  Yes I’ve still got my boys at home, however there’s a very large difference between one’s partner and one’s offspring.

I’m only 43.  I have to realize that PIT #2 is closer to leaving home than I care to admit.  PIT #3 will be home for a while longer but eventually (despite his protests to the contrary) he’ll go off to college, find a girl, and settle down somewhere (hopefully) other than Daddy’s house.  Even if both of my boys decide to attend local college and live at home during that time, they’ll still be gone before I’m 60.  I’m not spending the rest of my life alone.

This brings me to the title of this post.  I took stock of the number of (known) single women in my life.  Including my writing partner and baby sister, I came up with five.  As I said, one of those is my sister, that leaves four.  My writing partner lives in California and has made it clear she’s not leaving the state of the Governator, down to three.  One of these is a co-worker and good friend.  Aside from the fact that she has a boyfriend moving to Iowa later this year, we are neither’s particular cup-of-tea. Two.

The other two are nice enough but after talking with both of them and going on a few dates, it’s quite clear that there is no future for me and either of them.  One of them keeps bringing up a past boyfriend in EVERY conversation and makes it quite clear that he holds the strings to her heart.  The other expressed an interest in pursuing a relationship but since that pronouncement, she has hooked up with not one, but two different guys.  OK, I’m not stupid.  I don’t need to have it spelled out for me.  That leaves me at zero.

Now, I have a lot of meatspace acquaintances.  They are all either married, children, or well past retirement age.  In my social circle, aside from the previously mentioned women, there are no adult single females in my life.  Four months ago that wasn’t a problem.  It’s still not a problem but left untouched it will be.

I’m looking for some specific traits that the next Mrs. Nibbelink should have.  She should share my faith.  She should like children as my puppet team and volunteer work deal primarily with children.  She should also understand my geek factor.  I’m not saying she has to like the same movies, TV shows, gaming choices, or even like going to Renaissance Faires (those would be a nice bonus but the first two are the deal breakers).

So where do I go to find said person?  The local bar? no not if the first two are my primary conditions?  A singles club? possibly but there aren’t any locally and I still have my boys to look after.  A church that shares my faith? well yes that’d be the first place to start looking.

Therein lies my problem.  My current church has NO singles group.  So I need to find a church that has what I’m looking for.  I’ve been asking around, checking out local church websites and basically shopping for another church to attend.

Oh my.  You’d think I announced the apocalypse.  This is causing more furor than my looking into getting a tatoo.  I’m getting lambasted from all sides for everything from disrespecting my wife’s memory to leaving a church home for no good reason to being in mourning long enough.  *sigh*

To put it into the metaphor.  Just because I’m trying to find the pond where the fish are does not mean I’m planning the fish fry for this weekend.  I’m not ready to go window shopping yet, I just want to know where the mall is located.  I’m not ready to start dating, but when I am I need to know where to go looking for single females that meet at least the first two conditions.

Gals, I’m not yet ready for any sort of a serious relationship as I’m still grieving my departed wife.  I am lonely and I am looking to meet some new people.

Thanks for listening.

July 25, 2010 Posted by | Life near an Iowa Cornfield, Memories of Virginia, Mrs. Vulcan Stev's Fight, Vulcan Stev, Vulcan Stev Family Journey | , , | 7 Comments

The Database is still here, just inactive.

Greetings,

I wanted to take some time before I hit the sheets to let everyone know that I have not given up on this blog.  Things are beginning to calm down in the aftermath of my wife’s passing.  Most of the expenses have been paid.  Most of the paperwork has been finished.

What remains to be done is the reorganization of the house.  I need to decided what stuff needs to be moved where.  I need to actually start throwing out the stuff that Virginia were working on pitching before she passed.  However with my full-time job this leaves weekends and evenings to accomplish those things.  Weekends and evenings are when I wrote for the blog.

The blog is not going away, it just won’t be updated as regularly as I’d like.  I’ve got about seven articles in various stages of completion, some movie reviews, some gaming lists, and a D30 article or two.  Once I get through some of the neglected household tasks that had been placed on hold due to the upheaval in our lives, I’ll get back to writing.

Thank you for staying with me.  Your patience will be rewarded.

July 19, 2010 Posted by | Life near an Iowa Cornfield, News, Reviews and Culture, Vulcan Stev Family Journey | , | 4 Comments

When it rains it pours…

I’m trying to get back into my normal routine.  The week of Virginia’s passing is now behind me.  Her funeral was yesterday.  It surprised me just how many people cared enough for my wife to take time out of their schedule mourn her passing and celebrate her life.  The service was beautiful and everything Virginia would’ve wanted.

I’m waiting for a copy of the funeral message to be e-mailed to me and I will then post it here.

Today, I went back to work for the first time in a week.  Before I could find out how much work was waiting for me, I had to deal with the fact that our Paper had been broken into.  Somebody busted in last night and cleaned out the till as well as stole all the camera equipment.  We had to wait until the sheriff’s department was done dusting for fingerprints.  Once done we were able to get back to work as we’ve still go a paper to get out this week.

I’ve still got lawyers to deal with.  I’ve got to have Virginia legally declared before the kids and I have access to her life insurance and retirement.  I don’t want to declare her gone.  I’d rather have Virginia back.  Short of that her will stipulates that her insurance is to be used to help raise the boys.  It should be enough that I don’t have to worry immediately about finding another job.

I’m discovering just how much work taking care of a house actually is.  I’m hoping that the boys will start helping pick up the slack.  Part of why I have nothing else in the queue is because I finished up some laundry and had to put away all the food that got sent home from the funeral.

I still miss Virginia.

May 17, 2010 Posted by | Life near an Iowa Cornfield, Vulcan Stev Family Journey | , | 6 Comments

What do I do now?

It’s 8:00 am Saturday morning.  I don’t have anything in the queue.  I do have posters picked out just not ready to be posted (unlike the canned ones from the previous 2 weeks).  I should have stuff back up and running on a normal schedule sometime next week.  For those of you who discovered the blog due to Virginia’s fight, you are welcome to stay.  I will get our Iron Man review done soon.

I’m not sleeping well at night.  There’s a great big empty space in the bed.  I wake up whenever I nudge into Virginia’s half of the bed and she’s not there.  The song “Sleeping Single in Double Bed” although half-remembered and certainly not about my circumstance springs unbidden from mind.

The dog is confused, he keeps looking for Virginia.  In fact I know how the dog feels.

I’m picking up Virginia’s ashes today.  The funeral is tomorrow.

If I didn’t have my kids around, I’d go stark raving loony.

Oh God, how am I going to survive without her?

May 15, 2010 Posted by | Life near an Iowa Cornfield, Memories of Virginia, Vulcan Stev Family Journey | , , | 8 Comments

Thoughts as I enter my 43rd year as a widower.

It’s 12:30 in the morning on the 14th.  I have been 43 years old for thirty minutes now.  In another fifty minutes I’ll have been a widower/single parent for exactly forty-eight hours.  My brain is mush but I can’t sleep.

I’m writing this mainly to try to make some sense of things.

I’ve had folks who have told me that they were praying for Virginia’s healing and that they were so sorry that God chose not to heal her.  Stop right there.  God has healed my wife.  She is in a place where the cancer is no longer part of her.  She is once again whole.  She has been healed just not in the way we might have expected or wanted for that matter.  I have been told by every doctor we talked to that liver cancer is one of the more painful cancers a person can endure.  If that is true than I am thankful that Virginia did not have to suffer long.  I miss her but we’ll have very few memories of Virginia’s shell, unlike my Grandmother Nibbelink who spent most of my life confined to a couch and barely able to move.

Would Grandma N. say that her life was wasted just because she spent the better part of two decades unable to breathe without oxygen or unable to walk more than the few steps from her bedroom to her bathroom and back?  No, she’d be the first to tell you that she lots of time to spend talking to God.  However her children and (most of) her grandchildren have plenty of memories of Grandma at her most vibrant.

I am very thankful that P.I.T. #3 (Chris) does not carry the burden of most of his “Mommy Memories” being of her as an invalid in a bed or on a couch.

Pvt. Black Spartan (Janae) has matured in the year that she has been in Uncle Sam’s (that would be the army and not Virginia’s brother) care and tutelage.  She has stepped in and taken some of the burden of dealing with life off of her father’s shoulders.  I thank God for my baby girl.

PIT #2 (Gerrit) has been somewhat of an enigma during this time.  I can tell he’s hurting but he’s got his father’s mis-guided notion that “Men Aren’t Supposed to CRY”.  I know my son and can tell when he’s not happy, right now he’s not.  I haven’t seen him cry yet but then he  probably is thinking “Dad is falling apart and I need to be strong for him”

Most of the immediate family from both sides are in town.  My brother will get here tomorrow and Virginia’s brother Sam finally got here today, in his haste he mis-booked a flight and was stuck in Denver for a couple of hours.

The boys and I have taken a pledge to keep the house from looking like it was the sole domain of three bachelors.  I don’t know how we’re gonna pull that off.  We’ve had friends (thank you) over helping us make it look nice now.

I honestly cannot comprehend the outpouring of love and generosity from all walks of our lives.  PIT #3’s school has taken it upon themselves to make sure that not only are me and the kids fed during this time but my parent and siblings and Virginia’s parents and siblings as well.  Thank you to TCS

Churches that we have attended in the past are taking up collections to help with funeral expenses.  The RPG community has set up a fund for donations (Dudes and Dudettes, I’m touched).  Each of the schools that Virginia interpreted for is getting unsolicited donations from their students.  I don’t know if I’ll EVER be able to thank every one individually for all they have done, are doing, and have pledged to do.   Each of those donations will be a very big help as Virginia missed the last month of her contract and I’ve basically taken a two-week unpaid vacation.  I’m overwhelmed and humbled, may God bless each and every one of you.

We found out that Virginia did have a life insurance policy.  Enough that once it comes through some of the larger recent expenditures (medical, funeral, etc.) can be paid off without my having to sell myself and the boys into slavery.  We might even have enough to take a vacation with Pvt Black Spartan to a gaming con (any suggestions?)

I’m still not excited about raising two boys by myself.  I’m not excited at all about the loneliness at night.  I’m realizing just how much of a rock Virginia was in my life and I don’t look forward to the future months once the flush of her passing has been forgotten.

I do not expect, nor do I want meals to continued to be provided for us, our home cleaned by others, the laundry done….  Eventually the extended family needs to return to their lives.  Gerrit, Chris and I will need to learn to get by on our own.  I’m not looking forward to that either.

So here I sit in (now 1:00 am) my chair.  My kids are taking me to see Iron Man 2 for my birthday.  I need my sleep for today will be busy.  I don’t want to go to bed because I’m getting lost in the queen sized area without my partner to snuggle against.  I’m trying to make myself sleepy enough now so I can go to bed without having to read one of my comic books to wind down.  (I ruined a Batman graphic novel because I wound down enough I fell asleep in it and drooled).

I miss my wife.

May 14, 2010 Posted by | Life near an Iowa Cornfield, Mrs. Vulcan Stev's Fight, Vulcan Stev, Vulcan Stev Family Journey | , , , , | 12 Comments