Archive for the 'Kai' Category

January 2nd 2011

New Year’s Reflections

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.


April 30th 2010

Kai Hates “The Sky”

Kai’s teacher pulled me aside this morning because she’s concerned that Kai has been very sad at school.  I’ve noticed it somewhat too, but it seems that the topic comes up more often at school; I guess because the other kids talk about their moms and their moms come to pick them during earlier parts of the day.

He still asks for mommy almost every day after a whole year.  You’d think he would have given up by now, but he’s got his mom’s determination.  Lately he’s been trying to think of ways that Mommy can come back to Earth.  The other night he was up late in bed talking for a while, so I finally went into his room and asked him who he was talking to.  He said he was talking to Mommy and to God.  He asked God to make a cloud with a slide on it so Mommy could slide down to Earth to see him.  He said that Mommy then told him that she was already an angel and that she couldn’t slide down the slide, but that she might be able to use her angel wings to fly down to Earth to visit him in the summer!  Either he’s got an amazing imagination for an “almost 4 year old”, or she really did tell him that…

Apparently Kai’s teacher is feeling acutely aware of the fact that Mother’s Day is coming because their curriculum will center around Mother’s Day.  She said she was hurt the other day because he mentioned he “hated the sky”.  She asked him why, and he said he hates Heaven too because his Mommy was stuck up there.

It crushes me to know that he is hurting, but I don’t know what more I can do for him.  I’m not in any better place myself to help…

P.S.  Sorry for another downer post…


March 26th 2010

Mommy’s “List”

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:

  • Potty training
  • Tying shoes
  • Kindergarten first day
  • Kinder graduation
  • Best friend
  • First crush
  • First time in trouble @ school
  • First girlfriend
  • Serious girlfriend
  • Wedding
  • Engagement
  • First kid
  • High school graduation
  • First big fight with Dadoo
  • License
  • First 100% on important test
  • First big win in sports/hobby
  • First defeat
  • First job interview
  • First apartment
  • College
  • Jesus in heart

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…


November 21st 2009

3 Poopy Accidents in 3 Days… Calgon Take Me Away

Changer a diaper is one thing, but changing poopy underwear that has run out all over the floor and all over the kid is another…  I need another vacation!

Check these guys out who struggled with their diaper changing experiences:
Dads Changing Diapers


November 17th 2009

5 Reasons I’m a Great Dad (but not a Great Mom)

I was reflecting on this a bit, and I thought it might make an interesting post:

1)I’m a great dad because I play and wrestle with Kai.  I’m not a great mom because I don’t have as much patience to sit and read to him as often.

2)I’m a great dad because I take Kai fun places like Disneyland and soccer games.  I’m not a great mom because when I go I typically forget something like his sippy cup or a jacket.

3)I’m a great dad because I let him wear whatever he wants.  I’m not a great mom because by the time I realize either of us is out of socks (or chonies) I have to scramble to do laundry.

4)I’m a great dad, because I lay down with him when he goes to sleep so that he is not scared.  I’m not a great mom because when he does wake up scared and cries out, “I want my mommy!” I just don’t suffice.

5)I’m a great dad because I encourage him to get up and keep going when he falls down and it makes him feel strong.  I’m not a great mom because when he does get an “ouchie”, my kissing it doesn’t make it feel better like when mommy kissed it.


September 4th 2009

Quick Update on Me and Kai

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.


August 9th 2009

The Wisdom of Kai

So Kai and I were playing with his new jet the other day.  It’s a really cool looking “hot wheels” size fighter jet that he saw at the store and got really excited about.  Of course I had to give in and get it for him.  When we got home, he took the jet and a couple of his favorite trains and started playing with them all in the living room.  He was making all kinds of sound effects and having a grand time.

I decided to ask him which was his favorite: the jet or the Thomas train.  He thought about it for a second and looked up and said, “How ’bout both, Dad?”

…yeah, how about both! 

He’s teaching me new things about life every day.

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July 30th 2009

Kai Said His First “Bad” Word

I didn’t realize how surprised I would be to hear Kai say his first “bad” word.  Even though all he said was “shutup”, it felt so wrong.  Actually, he didn’t even say it in anger.  He was explaining to me that he got in trouble at school (daycare) for saying it.  I think he had a bit of a guilty conscience.  He told me that one of his friends at school says that to him.

He’s growing up so fast.  In some ways I wish I could just stay home and teach him myself; shelter him from the world.  In other ways I’m really proud of him for how articulate he is at 3 years old.  One thing is for sure, this is the beginning of a lot more surprises and challenges.  God help us…  😉

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July 12th 2009

Out of the Mouths of Babes

Kai did something yesterday that caught me off guard that I haven’t been able to get out of my head.  It was absolutely precious. 

We have  many pictures of Monica up all over the house, but they’ve been there all along so he usually doesn’t pay any extra special attention to them.  Well, though yesterday was an ordinary day, he suddenly stopped whatever he was doing at the time and walked over to a picture of Monica in her wedding dress.  He stood there for a moment and I got nervous that he was in the midst of an emotional struggle.  All of a sudden he said, “Mommy is a princess.”  I fully agreed and he moved on to whatever he was doing before.

I couldn’t have said it better myself…

Monica Solo in Wedding Dress


July 6th 2009

Birthday and Anniversary

Kai is back from his mini-vacation, Monica’s birthday was Friday (July 3rd) and our 8 year anniversary is tomorrow (July 7th).   Quite an eventful several days.  Many people have sent their support and prayers for me and Kai as we face these important “firsts”; her first birthday since passing, and our first anniversary.  I really appreciate it.  I think it must really help because, in anticipation for these days, I end up getting through them fairly well.  I had my “moments” on Monica’s birthday, and I think our anniversary might be a bit harder, but for the most part I’ve been getting through it ok.  Actually, last week on Monday was an ordinary Monday –  nothing special with no significance, but it was the hardest day I’ve had so far.  I think it was a matter of me letting my guard down a bit. 

It’s been almost two months, and I think the haze is starting to lift a little.  Instead of constantly being numb or guarded, I’m starting to allow myself to experience and even enjoy life again; both the ups and the downs.  It seems my highs are higher and my lows are lower now than they have been in the last 2 months.  Overall, I think that is progress.  It can make it harder sometimes, but it’s a better place to be.

For what it’s worth, the one thing that has really helped me get through this time is that I celebrate the fact that we had the most amazing 8 years of marriage that I could ever have hoped for.  We lived several life times in that short period.  It took me 3 days to go through and choose the pictures for her memorial video, and during that time I got to relive all the good times and memories we had.  I’m greatful for that time and those memories.  In some ways, I feel like I’m one of the most blessed guys in the world because I had something that many other guys only dream of: a wonderful, smooth, happy, stable, fun, and blessed marriage.  What more could I ask for in life?

By the way, here are some pictures of Kai and his first fish.  He is so cute!  Kai Love's Fishing! Kai's First Fish!!!


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