May 11th 2015
We miss you.
We love you.
You’d be so proud of Kai!
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May 11th 2015
We miss you.
We love you.
You’d be so proud of Kai!
Comments Off on 6 Years
January 2nd 2011
It’s been quite some time since I last posted here. Of course, the earth continues to revolve around the sun and the days still come and go. …and I still struggle with posting because I don’t want to be the downer in anyone’s day. Being a new year, however, it seems like a reasonable time to reflect.
Kai is growing like crazy. Though in many ways I wish he would stay a baby (as any mother might), it’s actually been a lot better for the both of us to have him grow. It turns out that it is much easier to handle a 4 year old than a 3 year old. He is very smart and is willing to reason much of the time. He understands the difference between right and wrong. His independent nature, which he gets from Mommy, helps him to be entertained on his own and also to not feel lonely. The year had ups and downs, but we got to share many adventures. His birthday party was a big hit. Thanks to all who participated. We also had the good fortune to go on our first camping trip and to jump around in the ocean. We spent some time “on vacation” at Lake Havasu, played the new Kinect video games together, and even started some new traditions like Taco Tuesday. There are so many wonderful memories over the last year that I will always treasure. The one thing that stands out to me as the most noteable happened just a few weeks ago, though. Kai caught me visibly upset (read sad) and asked me what was wrong. I’m not sure that he had ever “caught” me like that before. Anyways, I told him that I am still very sad and asked him if he still gets sad. He said he “doesn’t get sad anymore”. He said that he knows Mommy is in heaven and that she is an angel and that she is always with him. It was one of the happiest and saddest moments of the year for me. In one sense, it was a very sensitive moment and full of sorrow, but on the other hand, as a dad, it pleases me to hear that he is healing and learning to deal with his reality. He still asks about Mommy regularly, but he doesn’t ask about where she is or whether she’s coming back. He wants to know what she was like and what she would think about things.
So, Kai is beginning to move forward and is growing emotionally as well as physically. I, lamentably, have not been so fortunate.
I guess for the last year and a half, I have been desparately running from the hurt and loneliness to distractions rather than healing. I finally had to realize the hard way that it was an unsustainable way for me to live. The sadness kept catching up to me even with my best efforts to distract myself. Now I’m on a mission to heal. I’m desparate for it. Even though it means I will have to face the hurt and loneliness, I believe that it is necessary for me to even begin healing. I can’t believe I still have to begin healing. It seems that until I make some progress in this area, I won’t be able to really enjoy or appreciate life. Things I used to love and need currently are lackluster or even painful. Places I cherished, people I loved, and things like music, which I used to need like food, no longer provide joy. Hope has been replaced by confusion. God has been silent. Goals and dreams have become like legends; not knowing if they ever really existed or not. I want to be able to live and love again; healthy and stronger. I believe I can do it. I must try…
I guess it comes across so melodramatic and maybe even cheesy… What can I say? It’s the way I feel at this particular moment. I may be reaching out to some of you this year. I pray it’s in an attempt to heal and not hide. Keep me accountable (but gently please). I’m not sure how I’m going to do it. I just know that I am at least conscious of the need, and have the emotional desperation leverage to truly seek it.
Here’s to a better 2011.
July 7th 2010
July is another “difficult” time of the year. The 3rd is Monica’s birthday, and today is our anniversary. It would have been 9 years today.
I thought it would be nice to start a tradition of spending the 4th of July with Monica’s family from now on and also celebrate her birthday, so last weekend I went up to Paradise, CA which is up north by Chico. We’ll see how that develops (’cause traffic on the 4th of July weekend is worse than I expected and it’s already an incredibly long drive…).
I still think the idea was a good one, but the reality didn’t quite turn out how I thought it might. I ended up feeling really conflicted about taking Kai to the cemetery, since in his mind, Mommy is in heaven. Would it be too much for him to process? I decided to just tell him that it was a special place for us to remember Mommy.
…the problem was that I chickened out. I just couldn’t do it. Even now as I write this that huge lump in my throat grows to a point that it seems it might burst. I hope over time I can gather the courage to go there. In the mean time, I just felt like I had to confess…
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March 26th 2010
After Monica passed, I looked for something she may have written during her struggle. Maybe a note for Kai to give to him when he got older; maybe a note for me…
One day I frantically searched for hours and even went through her purse to find this letter or note that didn’t exist. I was crushed to not find anything, but I rationalized that it was due to her decisive outlook that she was going to keep fighting until she won the battle that she might have felt she didn’t need to “leave any thoughts or words” for us.
Last night I was organizing my closet in the new house and I came upon Monica’s purse. It is mostly intact the way she left it, but I had gone through it already to get a few things like the check book. For some reason, I decided to open a small side pocket and in it was nothing but a receipt. Quintessential Monica; she always saved her receipts for a while “just in case”. Normally I would have just tossed it, but for some reason I decided to open it to see what she bought. Suddenly I realized there was writing on the back. I didn’t recognize the writing as hers at first because it was a bit messy and hurried, but it was definitely hers. She must have been in a hurry or standing up writing it or something…
The date on the receipt is 04/21/2009. That is exactly 20 days before she passed. I don’t know if she was starting to realize she was getting weaker or if she just had a moment of sadness, but what she wrote on the back of that receipt in a hurried (or upset) state was a list of events that she might miss in the future for Kai. Here is the list in the order that she wrote it:
Last night was the first really big emotional break down I’ve had in a while of trying to be strong. This morning has been equally difficult. It’s too bad the “note” she left behind is such a sad one…
January 11th 2010
A friend of mine texted me today to ask how things have been and it occurred to me that I’m a bit like the economy. I guess I’ve crashed, and every time it looks like there’s an upswing, I crash again even harder…
I hadn’t even realized it until I got the text, but today makes it 8 months since Monica passed.
It is not getting easier.
October 4th 2009
I’m currently still living the vagabond experience and writing this from Chicago so I haven’t made a lot of extra time to write new posts, but I have a ton of pictures and good stories so I’ll make some updates next week when I’m back in Whittier.
This weekend I wanted to take a moment and reflect a little though. October 2 was the two year mark of Monica’s original diagnosis of breast cancer. I remember it like yesterday. She was so brave from that very first day. I think I was so scared that I was in denial. I didn’t want to make too big a deal out of it because I didn’t want to scare her any more while she was being brave. Besides we figured breast cancer was beatable; especially at her age. We never thought for a moment that the news could get worse than it already was. Unfortunately, her diagnosis was wrong. Five months later, we found out after her bilateral mastectomy that what she really had was angiosarcoma.
Well, it’s been two years since my heart first fell into the pit of my stomach. It seems to live there now. Days like Oct 2 are sad days. I don’t mean to finally get around to posting something and have it be negative, but that’s the reailty of it. Hopefully, getting it off my chest like this will help in the healing process.
I’ll update about how Kai is doing and some of my adventures next week.
September 4th 2009
I’m not sure what it was the other day, but I guess I just woke up with the blues. I’ve been feeling much better since yesterday. Thank you to those of you who sent words of encouragement and prayer.
I thought Kai had been doing much better lately as I’ve noted before, but the last two days has been a struggle for him. He keeps saying that he thinks I am going to die, and he’s been pretty upset. Poor kid… He had been doing so well, that I forgot that he’s also still working through the grief and the emotions and fears that come from it. Please keep him in your prayers as well.
I wish everyone a fun filled, safe holiday weekend.
September 2nd 2009
Not sure why exactly (I think it’s a mix of a things), but I have a lump in my throat and an empty/sick feeling to my stomach today…
August 12th 2009
Yesterday was three months. I didn’t plan on writing anything because I shy away from “bumming people out” with a sad post. A lot of my posts recently have been cute little episodes and exchanges between Kai and I. However, many people the last two days have been asking how I’m really doing, so I guess I should come clean.
It’s getting harder. Things have slowed down, the fog has lifted, and the loneliness factor is unavoidable. For the first time in my life I can say that I am genuinely sad; even depressed. I don’t have any clear remedy. Work has been extremely stressful and Kai is 3 years old; enough said there.
Pray for a light at the end of the tunnel…
July 21st 2009
Today was the first day in a long time that I didn’t have something specific planned or something unfinished that couldn’t wait. I left Kai’s sippy cups unwashed. They can wait ’til the morning. I’m even writing this post at a decent hour. It was nice, in a way, to have a free moment. As things start to slow down and life starts to seek its equilibrium, I wonder what’s next.
Most of my life has been blessed to a point where I never really felt penetrating, genuine sadness. Sure I had a few low moments in life, but never anything that didn’t pass quickly. Obviously, this is different. Since Monica passed, I have been experiencing that deep sadness. Somehow I’ve been able to manage it though. I’ve been able to justify that, since anyone would be sad in this situation, it’s ok to allow those emotions in. It would be more troublesome if I didn’t allow myself to feel those emotions. It isn’t always comfortable or “fun”, but I’ve decided it’s healthier to feel the sadness than to repress it. That cerebral justification has allowed me to cope with the depth of the emotion.
Recently, though, I realized the recipe has changed. A new ingredient has been added and it changes the flavor of the entire mix. Recently I’ve felt loneliness. I’ve experienced loneliness before in life, but it was never mixed with sadness; certainly not deep, genuine sadness. It’s a potent mix.
How are you supposed to not feel lonely when you still feel lonely around other people?
The rest of this week I’ve got a lot of plans, so I’ll be keeping myself busy. That seems to help in the short term. Beyond that I have to decide whether I want to continue slowing down, or keep my schedule packed tight.
Since I know everyone is wondering how Kai is doing, I would say he is doing better. His temperament is evening out a bit. He still talks about Mommy a lot and he says he misses her, but he doesn’t seem to be as emotional when he talks about her. He has been asking me lately if I will go to the clouds with him so we can see Mommy in heaven. It makes me smile and cry at the same time.