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Wolf_22 08-07-2022 08:53 PM

This has been one of the worst summers of my life.
So far this summer...
  1. I've had to spend about $2,500 on various roof repairs.
  2. $2,600 for a water pump replacement in my car.
  3. ~$10k engine swap for my truck.
  4. July's electric bill was $179, the highest electric bill I've ever had in my 900 square-foot home that I've lived in for the past 10+ years. Everything is so high anymore and shows no signs of relenting...
  5. Family I'm close to seem to hang out all the time without me and rarely call.
  6. Lost both parents between June and July.
How's your summer going? Ha.

Yes, I'm whining, but can you blame me? I didn't have a relationship worth mentioning with the parents and because of their life decisions, their deaths weren't surprising. I'm angry, sad, regretful, and proud... It's a lot to process despite having had no relationship with either and it's a little painful knowing that nobody in my family really tried to be an ear for me about what all was going on in my heart about it all.

The water pump issue was done and I guess it's okay now. Can't really say anything isn't working right, but I worry about it all the time. As for the truck, well, it's an old 2006 Chevy Colorado with about 147k miles on it. Between the timing chain, oil rings, piston slap, and everything else, I'm just hoping I can last until the 22nd of this month because that's the week that the re-manufactured engine and multiple engine components is being swapped. The good news is that the truck is paid-off and everything else on it is in pretty good shape. There's a little rust here-and-there, but nothing structural or that can't be repaired. Plus, the engine job is going to come with a 3-year / 100k warranty and that applies to most of the brand new modules I'm installing onto it, too. I just have to make it until the 22nd and every time I start the truck up, I feel my heart drop. This morning it acted up when I started it and lit up the check-engine light but after reading the code, I learned that it was the same code that was already on there, which I'm expecting to be fixed from the new engine stuff. So I'm trying not to worry too much about it. And after it finally started, it ran okay.

I'm sorry, everyone. I know I probably have it better than many and I'm not trying to whine but this summer has been hell. I feel so damned alone and despite my best efforts, I never seem to find anyone out there in the world to lean on. Even my grandmother whom I always viewed as being closest to in my life, always seems to find a reason to be the first to hang up the phone whenever I call her and it's usually during those calls that she tells me about how she just hung out with my older sister and her boyfriend / daughter for dinner (whereby I hardly ever get invites). I just hate my life right now, so if you read up to here, bless your heart.

Just had to vent.

least 08-08-2022 03:21 AM

I'm sorry this year has been rough for you. I hope things start to improve soon. :)

Astro 08-08-2022 07:58 AM

I'm sorry to hear about the losses in your life, it's never easy to be without our parents. I think of that often now, how deeply I miss them and how I'm aging, the years pass so quickly. My life is filled again with family and friends, but in years past when I felt the loneliness of early recovery it helped immensely to lean on other alcoholic/addicts and men for fellowship and support. AA meetings and church were my home.

I can certainly relate to the vehicle and home expenses, having spent thousands getting my Tacoma to stop burning through tires due to suspension and steering issues! And homes, well, they're an ongoing work in progress always requiring one repair or another. Yes, they're luxury items, we are so fortunate to have them, but it's easy to get consumed in the cost to maintain them and how hard we have to work to earn the $$ to have this "stuff" in our life. I try to keep in perspective that these are gifts to me, I've been blessed with the ability to have them and have the skills to earn a decent living. All of this is part of my recovery, the Promises of AA tell me among other things that "fear of people and economic insecurity will leave us" and "we will intuitively know how to handle situations that used to baffle us". I believe these to be true.

I hope you come to a place of peace and comfort in time. I'm currently working several jobs to keep up with my household's bills, and the best part is that I work with a lot of people, the relationships I am constantly forming lift my spirits and always fill me with hope.

Wolf_22 08-08-2022 09:15 AM

Reading your guys' responses brings tears to my eyes. Thank you so much for just being there. I know my post is probably whining but it's nice to have this site to dump emotional stuff at because there's times in my life when it's all I have. So thank you so much.

Astro, you're spot-on about maintaining perspective. One thing I'm noticing about my life right now is that the weekends get a little tough sometimes because it seems like it's always the weekends when something crops up. Yesterday, it was the momentary scare about the truck engine when I went to start her up for the first time and a couple weekends before that, it was something with my kitchen sink... So what I'm planning on doing in tandem to this truck engine business is that I'm planning on taking out an additional $2k to spend on myself. Well, it won't be exactly $2k, but there's going to be a little money in there above the $10k I'm spending on all the engine stuff just to treat myself with. I've always wanted a TIG welder and a kayak, so I'm planning on using that additional money on those things as the kayak, especially, will give me something to toy around on with local water holes. I love to fish, too, so that should add to that experience. I figure it will help me keep my mind off things and hopefully have more fun on my weekends.

And I sure hope I'll find comfort in time. I can't remember feeling happy. My lack of relationships is a major cause of that and I'm trying to explore ways to change that. It's so much harder forming relationships when you're older.

Astro 08-09-2022 06:59 AM

I'm 58, maybe not that old, although I feel old, and I have multiple side jobs that keep me working around a lot of people. I have friends of all ages, so usually I'm looking for a little quiet time alone. Speaking of that, I think your kayak idea is fantastic but I'm sorta bias. While I know that money and "stuff" usually bring only temporary happiness, last year I picked up a cheap used kayak and I loooooove fishing and paddling around a lake whenever I can find some free time. I look forward to hearing how you enjoy it, and one tip I would suggest is buying used, there are great deals out there.

Wolf_22 08-09-2022 07:55 AM

Originally Posted by Astro (Post 7838615)
I'm 58, maybe not that old, although I feel old, and I have multiple side jobs that keep me working around a lot of people. I have friends of all ages, so usually I'm looking for a little quiet time alone. Speaking of that, I think your kayak idea is fantastic but I'm sorta bias. While I know that money and "stuff" usually bring only temporary happiness, last year I picked up a cheap used kayak and I loooooove fishing and paddling around a lake whenever I can find some free time. I look forward to hearing how you enjoy it, and one tip I would suggest is buying used, there are great deals out there.

I've been watching Craigslist for used kayaks, but in my area, there are rarely any on there that I would like to buy. Any suggestions on other places to look for used kayaks? And do you have a sit-in type or one of those where you sit on a raised chair? I went kayaking once with some buddies and the type we rented were the raised seat kind and I really liked it. Seemed like it would be the better type for fishing.

Alysheba 08-09-2022 09:40 AM

Wolf, sending you love and some well deserved peace. 💖☮💞💥💫
That is a lot to go through. Thankfully, I hope you were able to cover it all.
You are in my thoughts and prayers.
Take good care. ODAAT xxoo

Hevyn 08-09-2022 10:08 AM

Hi Wolf. I don't think it's just whining - you list many good reasons to feel sad & stressed. (People can be so disappointing.) Sometimes talking about it helps ease the anxiety a bit.
I keep saying most of us are going through a really hard time right now. The world seems upside down, and that's not even considering all our personal stuff.
I love it that you go from talking about all that's wrong - to mentioning getting a kayak. :) You have hope for the future & a brighter day. I hope you can turn things around.
Sending good thoughts. :hug:

Wolf_22 08-09-2022 10:13 AM

Alysheba / Hevyn, thank you so much. I'm trying to have hope. It's not easy waking up each day with some of the thoughts I have flowing through my brain about this or that. I've never gone through so much stress and anxiety as I am, but I do believe this storm will pass one way or another. Despite all the money issues and aspects about relationship problems, I'm not going to give up and I owe my fighting spirit to people like you.

So if I can just make it until August 22nd (the week I go take my truck in to get the engine swapped), I'm confident things will begin to feel a little more at-ease. Then after that, it's just a matter of paying the loan off and enjoying some water time with a new kayak. Ha. Major well-deserved stress relief! And you sure hit the nail on the head about the world feeling upside down... I really hope it all changes.

Hevyn 08-09-2022 10:15 AM

It has to change, Wolf.
Just know that you are never alone.

RunningScared 08-09-2022 02:53 PM

For what it's worth, this has been a sucky year for me also. My car has 130,000 on it and I fear having something go out that will cost a fortune. It's a Toyota, so I hope it continues without any major problems. It's an FJ and a lot of people have had transmission problems on that vehicle, which isn't cheap but certainly not the cost of an engine. I'm sorry for the loss of your parents. As far as the cost of the repairs, it's still generally cheaper than trying to replace a vehicle, especially with the cost of new and used cars now. Never feel sorry for venting. Here's hoping we both have a better rest of the year.

Wolf_22 08-09-2022 05:52 PM

Thanks, RS. It's uncanny you bring up transmission concerns because that was the first thing that went out in this truck after the 1st or 2nd year I had it (I bought it back in 2013 or 14). For me, it cost about $1,500 to swap through a small shop (they used a Jasper Transmission and it's been flawless). It was my fault it broke, too, because I got my truck caught in a snow trap in my driveway after a really bad winter storm and when I tried to get it out, I kept putting her in reverse-then-drive-then-reverse, etc. I guess I burnt up the sun gear because a few days after that, I couldn't put her in reverse no mo. Ha! That sucked big time. But yeah, replacing transmissions isn't fun. I did a quick look-up for your vehicle's tranny replacement cost and without knowing the year or type, it looks like if you were to do it through a dealership, it could go as high as $3,500x. Thing is, they used to say that exact kind of thing about my truck's tranny replacement cost, too. I even once heard someone claim it would run me $6k to do... So if that ever happens to you, try to find a small'ish non-dealership shop because I can't imagine that it should cost that much to do since it's really just unbolting the thing from the bell, etc. and then dropping it, and then loading up the new. Only a dealership would charge $1,200x+ for labor on a job like that. Worst case scenario might be a rebuild if you can't find a new or re-manned tranny, but I doubt you'd need to do that if it's a fairly recent model. You might consider taking her in for a tranny service at an actual transmission shop. Have you ever had that done? It might extend the life a bit and buy you some time to either proactively replace it or maybe hold off until the economy gets a little better for a trade-in.

And you hit the nail on the head about new used vehicles today. It's insane what's going on out there. When I first started dealing with this truck situation, I considered a new used truck (despite not wanting to give my baby away!) and the best deal I was able to find in my area was a 2008 Silverado 1500 with about 175k miles for $17k, as-is. No thanks. Don't get me wrong: I love Silverados, any year, really...but since I got this truck that I have now (which is paid-off) for $8k back in 2013/14 with ~88k miles on it (with it now having 147k in 2022, pfft), I just couldn't justify getting rid of her and I'm going to do everything I can to hang on to her for as long as possible. The frame does have a little rust on it, but nothing that can't be repaired or re-fabbed (it's mostly surface with the worst being on the leaf spring hangers, which I can refab if I ever need to) and if in 5 or 10 years the frame does rust away, I know a guy who can re-fab a brand new frame and another guy who can do the whole body swap. Grand total would probably be no less than $15k to do, but by then, I'm confident I'll be out from behind this financial 8-ball. I mean, if you love your vehicle, you move mountains, and everyone I've taken this truck to for a rust assessment has said I have years of life left in the frame before I ever need to consider something as drastic as that. Not many people do something like that. Ha.

Hey man, here's to hoping that things turn out better for us both (for all of us). Let's be hopeful they will. We all know that stuff like this comes and goes in life and we just have to keep waking up each day doing our best with what we got. I can tell by your post that you have a good head on your shoulders, so I'm confident things will turn out okay for you. We have each other on here, so if you're ever in the doldrums like I've been lately and need a place to unload, you know you can always come on here to let it all out. At the very least, it's at least looking like it's beginning to head into fall season now, which I always get really excited for. I love sweater weather. The coffee tastes better during this time, too. I'm in Indiana and we just finished going through a rain / cold front. Once the rain stopped, the temp FINALLY fell to about 78-degrees, and boy-oh-boy does it feel so awesome compared to that wretched, stagnant, bug-ridden, humidity-saturated 95-degree average our HVACs have been fighting for the past 2 months. Fall is by far my favorite time of the year. I can sense that it's on its way. With the kiddos going back to school and the air losing its humidity, you can almost feel that cooler high school football air. We'll be smelling those burning leaves and drinking apple cider lattes in no time.

Hang in there, man.

Astro 08-10-2022 07:05 AM

My kayak is a sit on top, Lifetime Daylite 8', 225lb capacity. Perfect for me and for casual fishing, I found it on Facebook Marketplace for less than $100 in great condition. I would check OfferUp too but there prices are usually a bit higher. At some point I'll upgrade to a larger angler's kayak, but for now I'm extremely happy when I can just get out on the water.

Wolf, "this too shall pass". I go through seasons of difficulty in my life but always find that my HP drops me on my head exactly where I need to be, and life is good in spite of the challenges. You've got a lot of people here cheering you on :hug:

RunningScared 08-15-2022 07:01 PM

How you doing Wolf? This year has been sucky because I'm suffering from fairly severe depression, which I am being treated for. I have a hard time motivating myself to do anything. I did get my first car project done for this year, other than changing the oil. The front windshield washer pump went out. Of course right after I filled the reservoir. It was fairly easy, just two bolts and pull it out. The hardest part with electrical things for me is getting the electrical connectors disconnected. I order parts like that from RockAuto. I'm lucky because with many Toyotas the only access to that pump is through the front wheel well. I'm lucky I can do this by myself. Auto mechanics are so ridiculously expensive now, and it's hard to find an honest one. One of my ex's relatives recently got married and her new hubby is an auto mechanic. I'll ask him for recommendations if I need a mechanic. (My ex and I remain good friends. I always go to her family gatherings. I'm treated as family.)

I've been out fishing a couple of times this year. My son has a 1968 18 foot runabout he's refurbished. It's a cool boat! It's a hard top, which provides shade. I wish he would invite me more often. I've never been on a kayak before, so I'm not sure that would be an option for me.

Wolf_22 08-15-2022 08:26 PM

I'm making it, RS. I'm glad you asked because just today, I signed the paperwork for the loan I need to pay for the re-manufactured engine swap that I'm getting done to my truck on Monday. It's been on my mind all day. I'd be lying if I said I wasn't fighting anxiety over the actual work that's going to be done to my baby... Stereotypical thoughts are flooding my head, like, "What if I get a lemon?" or "What if the guys miss a bolt, forget to connect a thing?" I guess I just need to do it and hope everything just works out because I keep coming back around to the fact that the majority of the major engine components (timing chain, rods and pistons, oil rings, header, lower block, crank and cams, valves, internal oil pump that comes with the block, etc.) are going to fall into a 3-year and or 100k mile warranty with the majority of the other brand new modules I'm also getting with all this--like a radiator, alternator, power-steering pump, starter, new mounts, and some new cross-member jounces--are also coming with a warranty (some even falling into the main block warranty with others maybe a lesser warranty, but all having at least SOME coverage). As good as that is, especially for the age and mileage my truck has in this situation, I still can't stop feeling anxiety over it and my new $12k debt! Ha. I laugh about it a little because, I mean, I might as well, right? Laughing about it is better than crying. I mean, these things just happen. It's life, right? Vehicles break down, roofs spring leaks, pipes burst, "crud" happens sometimes... But my hope is that the shop is able to stick to their expected ~$10k amount so that I can use about $2k to treat myself. It's difficult to know if they'll come across anything during the work, such as any cracked manifolds or some sort of frame issue. I doubt they'll find anything bad with the frame--it's actually in pretty good shape--but I'm not sure about the manifolds or anything else, which is why the shop rep advised that I keep at least a $200 buffer to handle anything like those unknowns. So if they can keep close to the $10k mark, I'm going to take whatever difference I have and buy myself a new TIG welder, the kayak, and maybe a few smaller goodies like a new floor sweeper and steam cleaner.

As someone who lost his father, I can assure you that I had always wished my father would've bit the bullet and just came over to my house to hang out or see if I'd like to grab a stupid cup of coffee. Just out of the blue. He never really did that, especially since we weren't on talking terms, so at the risk of giving you some unwarranted advice about your son, I can only suggest that you bite the bullet and express to him how much it would mean to hang out more on the boat. It sounds fun and it'd be a great way to bond. It wouldn't have to be every other day or anything that frequent, but maybe arrange a bi-weekly kind of thing? It would give you both something to look forward to. God knows we all need that in today's world. I can't wait to get my kayak because where I live, we have these old strip pits-turned-ponds that locals go to but not enough to be crowded... So I can't wait. I've been wanting to go to the "better spots" where the big fish hang out. It's going to be optimum weather for that, too, because here in Indiana, the temperature is FINALLY beginning to fall down into that fall-like weather and that's my favorite time of the year. I can see myself on the water in my kayak, thermos of coffee in one hand, fishing pole in the other. Ha. I probably won't even have the line in the water--I'll be that guy who falls asleep in some remote area despite being loaded up with bold mud, but having a ball nonetheless. Ha.

I feel ya about depression, RS. I sometimes fall into that pit whenever I think about my ex-girlfriend or the parents. I always do everything alone, which I'm trying to change in baby steps, but for the times when I'm forced to be by myself, I still try to push myself out into the world. I think that's why I go to Starbucks--or any coffee shop, really--with a book: it lets me be sociable in baby steps, ya know? I've made some friends doing this. Not super close friends that I could go kayaking with, necessarily, but people I can at least shoot the breeze with.

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