Such Are the Days of Our Lives


Such Are the Days of Our Lives

The next day we went over to see Nikki’s grandparents.

Though Nikki was really worried about seeing them again because (as she confided in me) “Mom told us over and over how they didn’t love us and didn’t want to see us. But then she told us the same about you Dad, and I see that was a big lie!”

“Of course they were lies, Nicole. Don’t you remember when you were a little kid, I think you were about four, and we walked over to grandma’s home from our house in all of that snow? We had the dog, Max, with us and when it got too deep for you, I put you on my shoulders. And don’t you remember when we had your birthday parties at Grandma’s? We all love you kids and any of us will do whatever we can to help, but we never see you, though I tried many times.”

We drove the long way over there, around Lake Phalen twice, until Nikki was more comfortable meeting her estranged grandparents’ once again. The smiles from everybody were felt deep within my soul because I knew how badly the parents and I wanted to help my kids.

Mom and Nicole sat at the kitchen table and began talking as if their close relationship had not even skipped a beat. They were both happy…Dad and I got comfortable in the living room and watched Phil Mickelson sink another birdie, on the television.

Steve Richie

Hi folks, Two lives in one lifetime. The first me, lived to age thirty-four. That Steve was overly confident and oozing with pride. Then, on a record heat-setting day (107º) here in the Twin Cities area of Minnesota and western Wisconsin, a one car near-fatal wreck left me in a two-month long coma. I emerged much as I was before minus certain physical capabilities, but my mind seemed mostly in tact. The crash and its effects did not change me (I emerged a happy individual) but the deeds perpetrated against me in the ensuing months from my wife of sixteen years scared and humbled me as I was dragged down with nothing left by my wife who now had guardianship over all of our accounts. And neither would she allow me to see our kids. She took everything out of, "Our" names and changed them to her name only; then would not allow me to our home and divorced me. I was angry, but no more. I spent half of 1988 and more than half of 1989 in hospitals, nursing homes and a three month stint at a head-injury rehab center where I was being taught how to re-enter society as this different person, that I didn't know. I was not able to return to my previous line of work, a self-employed decorator, you know, painting and paperhanging. It was a physical job which required much dexterity, finesse, and a good grasp of numbers. I returned to the beginning, school, but on a community college level. One of the instructor's liked my writing and I began focusing my attention on that. I attended classes at, "The Loft," A Place for Writers in Minneapolis. While there, a classmate of mine was having her friend from New York, a CBS executive, to her home for the holidays and asked me if she could do a critique on a couple chapters of a book I was writing, "A Day I'll Never Remember" and I obliged. When she returned to class the following Monday she told me that the exec wanted a ten-page synopsis of the book for a possible movie; I was excited. After obliging for that also, I never saw or heard from her or the guy from CBS. Next thing I knew I was watching a movie called, "Regarding Henry" starring Harrison Ford and the scenes of therapy were exactly like what I went through and had written about. Regarding Henry - could've been my story except that, "Henry" got his head injury from a gunshot and his wife stayed with him throughout the ordeal. Coincidence I'm sure, though, the therapy scenes entailed what I described in the book so I always wondered..... My hope, my dream is to bolster our income for my daughter and for myself. I am and have been raising this beautiful, talented little girl who was diagnosed with autism at age two, since 2006 singlehandedly. I divorced her mother the same year following complaints that I spent too much time with our daughter. However, Stephanie began school with no need for special education. She has been reading since age four and understanding what she'd read. Stephanie maintains straight "A's" on her report card, has published two books (through school) and has been selected as an, "Honors" student for seventh grade English. My ex moved to New York to be closer to her sister and has been remarried now for a number of years. Well, that's only a snippet of my sixty-one years and I would like to thank you for reading, thank you.

One comment

  • I remember this clearly Dad. I miss you terribly and haven’t been able to sleep tonight because I have been worried about you. Could we be friends on Facebook friends again? I have a new job that I really like. Is you phone number the same? I bought myself a cellphone and would really like to reconnect. It seems like every day I see a little girl that reminds me of Stephie. I’m sorry I have been so lost for so long but I do love you guys and miss you very much. I hope you both have a beautiful Christmas filled with love. . . .

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