I began writing this post the weekend of Thanksgiving. I struggled for many reasons to complete it. I guess I was also avoiding its completion because then it would be complete and I wanted to avoid the associated feeling, at least for a short while.
Thanksgiving has come and gone. Other than birthdays, it’s the first holiday we would spend together and now it would be spent for the first time without you. I still find it difficult to believe it’s been 9-months since you passed. Christmas is right around the corner and Stephen said he would wear your favorite sweater. Remember the one with all of the lights on it?
Christmas too has come and gone as has the New Year. Our famous Christmas Eve dinner was canceled because of the blizzard. There was a driving ban that lasted 4-days. The winds were strong enough that anyone who ventured outside to attempt to drive despite the driving ban was in need of having their sanity questioned. I worried about Mom as she was alone during that time. I am grateful the phones continued to work and she never lost power. Christmas Eve was delayed one week. We gathered on New Year’s Eve. It wasn’t the same. You were missed and Stephen and Marissa and their families were unable to make it.
Mom’s 81st birthday was also in the mix of the holidays. We took her to dinner at the Grapevine and to a Sabres game. I think it was safe to say she had a good time. It was fun watching her enjoy herself. We gathered at the house for her birthday and I saw Chase sitting by himself in the kitchen. He was looking in the direction which was normally occupied by you. I asked him what he was doing because I noticed a tear rolling down his cheek. He sadly said, “I miss Grandpa. He isn’t here anymore and now Grandma lives by herself.” I gave him a big hug that I can’t help but think was helpful for the both of us.
Chloe is now one and he personality is rapidly developing. Mackenzie is just 2 months old and as of this writing Stephen and Caitlin had their baby, a son; Joseph Christopher. Everyone is healthy and doing well. He joined the family Wednesday, December 21, 2022. The family arrived home hours before the blizzard hit and the driving bans were in place.
I’ve been thinking a lot about you these past few weeks. Mom said the Cardinal continues to visit although with less regularity. I was at the house Saturday and I could see him sitting in a tree at the edge of the property. His bright red feathers loudly announced his presence against the stark white of the snow.
I love you and miss you. I especially miss our Saturday talks and your smile as you called to me before I would leave the house and heard you say, “Thank you for making me smile and laugh.”
One last thing. The last time I administered your medication you grabbed my hand and asked me why I took time from my schedule every day. This was the last thing I said to you before you died. I grabbed your hand, gipped it tightly, and said, “Why wouldn’t I? After all, you and mom did for me. How could I not give back even this little bit?”
I love and miss you so much. I hope I made you proud. I know I was proud to call you Dad.