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Lost No Longer

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My family tree has an invisible asterisks after the title itself, set there in an attempt to be honest of my faint origins while maintaining the dignity of respect for my adopted family.  I love my family, along with it's regular amount of drama and unsettling factoids.  The complications of explaining the family org chart is already un-simple, complete with half siblings, step parents, missing links and whatnot.  Toss in the adoption fact and watch your audience dwindle quickly while the faithful few try to un-spin their heads.  The entertainment value is certainly there, but usually the conversation simply concludes with the all-too familiar phrase.  "That's crazy!!!"
To keep things straight, I wound up creating two family trees: one for my adopted family and another for my birth family.  As of last week, I still had no specific information about my mother other than her full name.  It was as if she had disappeared when she went to Oregon with my father, never to be…

But Wait, There's More

Lame.  Try starting your blog without the phrase, "many years ago..."  It's not getting any easier, but here I rise to the challenge.

Several years ago, I embarked on a journey most people start in elementary school.  "Okay kids, today we are going to create your family tree!"  Cool.  Ever since that day in 4th grade, and every time thereafter when I filled out a form asking me for my family medical history, I got to take the easy way out.  Draw a line through the question.  Cross out the section.  Create an answer called "I don't know."

It used to bother me, but I soon realized I could finish that test quicker than most.  And, since finishing tests was important to me for some mysterious, unknown reason which I never understood, I was happy to slash through that section and turn in the clipboard to the dental assistant or nurse or whoever thought they needed that information--in record time.  Nobody fills these things out faster than this guy.  …

Choosing to Remember

Last night, the call came from the officer. Your dad has been seeing people in his house and in his yard who aren't really there. He hasn't been using his oxygen or taking his medication. He was driving dangerously on the freeway and nearly caused two collisions near his house when he got home. He is being admitted to the hospital for his own protection until you can come.

And so, the wheel of life with its numerous cogs of drama graduates to the bigger model to accommodate this new spoke. It's not a tough choice to help your father when he gets old; he brought you through thick and thin when it mattered more than you thought. Now he needs you and doesn't know it. Doesn't want it, either. Since his memory is seriously challenged, I don't know how much longer he will be able to tell me the things I will always want to know.

My dad acts independent. He likes to be his own boss; he quit Darigold as a cheese-cutter (no shortage of fun explaining that to my 5…

Chapter One: That One Shoe in the Road

Of the different things I have considered, contemplated...ok, spent too much time on, is the one shoe in the road. You've seen them. It. Only one...which is the whole point. Why only one? Where's the other one?? How did that one get there? Did somebody loose a box of clothes...no, it's just one shoe. No socks, no second shoe...nothing else. Just a shoe.
I have seen all sorts of shoes by themselves over the past few years. It might be sensitivity awareness, like when you buy a new car then suddenly you see that model of car everywhere you go. I started noticing shoes by themselves and asking around. Ever since, they're everywhere. I see a new one at least once a week. I started taking pictures, but didn't have a good way to catalog them just yet.

I have heard that a pair of shoes tied together and suspended from a power line is indicative of one of two things; either someone in the area sells drugs, or someone in the area was the subject of hazing. Eithe…