When I was growing up my relationship with my father was confusing. Both my parents were young when I was born, he became a truck driver and as I grew up I didn’t have that “bond” that some fathers and sons have. Don’t get me wrong. I knew full well I was loved and my childhood was definitely not a bad one. When it came to dad, the older I got the more I felt that I simply didn’t know him, not like I knew my mom, who was my best friend. As I was finishing high school my parents got a divorce after many trial separations of which I tried out living with both of them individually. After my graduation I promptly started my own life and got the hell out of dodge, spending a few years at an arm’s length from everyone.
Fast forward a a few years and I found myself living in Calgary, not making much money, still chasing the dream of a life of music. At the time I lived in a part of town that was close to a popular truck stop. Upon finding out how close I was my dad and I started to meet once in awhile when he was coming through town. Conversations between two grown men over the odd greasy spoon dinner were had. Not many, I’m guessing I met him 4 or 5 times. It was great, through chats about cars, women and life I started to get to know my dad, as a friend, as a guy who had had a kid and got married when he was 19 years old. I looked forward to the next time he’d call to let me know he was coming through town. Instead, about a month after his 46th birthday I got a different call. One from my stepmother telling me that he had been killed in an accident outside of Nanton Alberta involving his truck not being braked properly while he was underneath it and it rolled over him.
Two years later things started to happen with the band I was in and despite my mom being there full stop and cheering the whole way despite the distance I still missed not being able to share with dad the small successes. The happiness would soon become short lived.
In a break between albums I was summoned by my aunt to get my ass back home as things were not right and the story of my mother’s shortness of breath was not being relayed to me in full. I flew home in late April of that year, thrust into a whirlwind of maybes, we don’t knows, misdiagnosis, cancer diagnosis, decline in health, support, home nurses, my 30th birthday “party”, oxygen bottles, morphine misters, will discussions, will fights, life insurance discussions, family bullshit, sadness and finally death. Six weeks after her 46th birthday my mom and my best friend was dead of inoperable lung cancer.
I’ll spare you the details of the next decade and a half. Lets leave it as a roller-coaster ride through grief, pain, bitterness, money I didn’t want, money I didn’t have anymore, dissolving music careers, career changes, new chapters and a whole lot of time spent on a hamster wheel.
Fast forward to the present day. It’s July 31, 2014. On June 16th of this year I turned 46. As of now, I am living and experiencing time that neither of my parents got to see in their own lives. I somehow feel that I can not, under any circumstances waste this time. My days spent in this cubicle are now numbered, 365 to be exact. At which point I will, ready or not take another leap of faith into pursuing a dream I have of seeing and photographing as much of the world as I can in the time I have left, however much that may be. Starting with the country and continent in which I live. If for some reason I don’t succeed again, then I will regroup until I can try a forth time, and again and again. This is MY time, my time to create that mark that my soul needs to leave before I depart this magnificent marble. A mark that will represent not only myself but the two people who made me. Using every ounce of the creativity that my mother shared, inspired and nurtured in me from day one. Using the tenacity, guts, logic and all out balls that my father possessed. I will make every day count as from here on in they will be lived for three.
I love you mom and dad.