The recent loss of my grandfather has gotten me to thinking, lots of thinking actually.

I have been focusing so much lately on the stresses in my life, that I have completely neglected the things that should be important. Granted, there are a lot of things that have become somewhat major, but the importance of people in my life has seemed less. I have taken those I love for granted.

So, though this will not be read by people who don't frequent this site, there are things that I need to say.

First of all, I hope that my grandfather knew that I loved him very much. I regret deeply that I didn't take the time to get to know him better, that I didn't visit more often. I guess I just had this childlike belief that he'd always be around, so there would always be an opportunity "next weekend..." or whatever.

To those I have slighted in the online communities I am active in: I apologize. Yes, many of my actions have been childish. I don't need to justify the things that happened. There *were* some issues that were unjust and needed to be addressed, but the way that things were being handled only made me more angry and prompted irrational responses a lot of times.

To my sifu: I have not been training as much as I should have been, I have not displayed the dedication that you would expect of me. I have forgotten a good many of my forms. For this, I apologize. I care deeply for you, for Beth and Cedric, and for my brothers with whom I used to train. If my lack of discipline is the reason that you have lost interest in training me, that is my own fault and I am prepared to take responsibility for that. However, that doesn't change the fact that I feel slighted by your seeming lack of interest in my progress as a martial artist when you have plenty of time for other people who you had once believed were less dedicated to the art. I will let go of my indignant feelings over this, but I will not forget. I hope that one day we may be able to train together once more, but at this point it seems little more than a pipe dream.

I never meant for this to really turn into a post where I apologize to a bunch of people that those of you reading this don't know.

There are a lot of factors contributing to the stress in my life. I'm having a lot of problems with my apartment manager, but those are being resolved. I have recently been angry about the situation with my sifu, but I'm dealing with that as I can. Mostly, however, it's the financial situation that's really getting to me, and I'm taking it out on people around me. For that, I am sorry.

Now, further thoughts. What happens on a day to day basis, those events that occur and make us either overly happy, or overly upset, that's called life. If I can't deal with it, I have no place to call myself an adult, much less a Shadow Knight. And so I have chosen to stop feeling sorry for myself, to let go of the negativity, and to live. Somewhere along the way, I lost the faith I used to have in my own resourcefulness, the faith I had in the Force. Life provides for all living things, but they have to recognize it, and accept it. You take the good with the bad, because that's how it is. It isn't fair, a lot of times, but sometimes it can be unfair in your favor. Then again, it's all a matter of perspective. Those things we label as "bad" often lead to other things we might label as "good". In reality, all is indifferent. There is no point in clinging to negativity, as it will only bring you down in the long run. On the other hand, there is no point in clinging to too much positivity, because it will build false expectations. Once again, I learn that all is in balance................