The best part and worst part about naming your kid after a season… You will always say it… But when something like “End of Summer” is thought or said.. It feels way more profound than its intention.
Summer is coming to an end. I say that because Aiden, like lots of my friend’s kids, is packing and getting ready to head back to college. Other parents have felt the same mix of emotions… Sadness. Worry. Elation. We have been through all of them. I am glad he got to be home and I am glad we were able to let him relax this in the off months without worrying about a job… But it’s time. We can work on cleaning the house some more. Oh, and we can start parking our cars in the garage again?!!?
Aiden told me the other day that the blog is a mess. He said if you want to go back to the beginning of last summer and catch up… You have to scroll through tons of pages. For the record, there is a menu at the bottom of the page that lets you see all the months I have added posts to the site… Starting in November 1999! But, I got his point. I never really thought about “navigation” when I was posting to the site. I did like the aesthetic look of this theme because it lets me focus on one picture per day. I hate to lose that. I may mess with the template at some point.
Its such a loaded question. Like I said before on here… We can dive as deep as I feel my relationship is with the person asking the question. Aquantice? Probably keeping grateful for asking about the family. Longtime friend… Hang on. You can get as much as you can withstand. The closest people… Well. We don’t really talk about it.
I think the laws of proximity to the situation that I just laid out give some clues to why. The closest people can’t handle the heat of a mutual conversation on this subject. All of us in the inner sanctum of Summer’s life are going through the same grief. That heightened sense still has us not really talking about it. We lived it with her. There are very few questions we need to ask each other.
We talk a lot about the mechanics of closing accounts, buying funeral plots, and working on memorial stuff. But we don’t talk about the last year. Its too soon?
I have told a few people (very recently) that I am content in some ways that we had St Jude in our corner through treatment. Other than starting at CARLE… I feel like we did everything we could do. Ang and I have both said this in the past week… I guess we share this solace.
I told my friend Greg today that I am also trying to wrap my head around Summer’s accomplishments in my life and what I might take from this. I really believe that having kids when I was 30ish made me a much better person. (I didn’t want them BTW. Angela tricked me into kids!) I spent my 30’s and 40’s attending to the needs of someone besides myself. Taking care of them leads to being a better husband. It led to volunteering my time to organizations important to them and ultimately led me to a lot of places that would not have happened.
Does it make me happy? No. Do I think that it’s all been worth it? Yes.
I guess that’s life. Or just part of the process?
Summer had bought tickets to see Offspring and Sum41 in St. Louis when we were making plans for the coming months after she was released from St. Jude. Just like the Bonaroo tickets… I was totally thrilled that she was motivated to think of things to do even if we were uncertain of the future.
This weekend is that concert.
Nate called me this week and said that other Nate can’t go and he doesn’t want to go by himself. James and Bruce are going… So I have an “in” should I want to go. I am in the air. I am not a fan of those bands!!! LOL. Sorry, Summer! I thought it was fun that she wanted to go… But I was totally happy knowing that this was a Nate and Summer thing.
I told my buddy Donny that I would go if he was back in town… But he’s gone. Does anyone else want to go?
Nate is sending me the tickets.
So… Those pins went really fast! Whoops! More are ordered. So are some keyrings, patches, and magnets.
I told Angela that we have now “even” on the cost of the items based on those first couple dozen orders. She said, “All that work to break even?”. Well… That’s one way to look at it. But, in reality, paying for the items is objective #1. Now that we have hit that goal… The rest all goes towards the scholarship fund.
Angela is convinced at this point that we will roll this scholarship fund into the Mackinaw Community Fund. We have not nailed down the details… That might take months since we sealed 10,000 into a CD for 9 months at the bank. (all for a couple hundred dollars in interest that will probably get taxed at 50%!!! But that pays for a lot of stickers!) Once we make that arrangement… We can let people donate with the benefit of tax savings.
Just like I said before… We keep ourselves busy… It keeps our minds busy. It helps.
Aiden is leaving at 6:30 AM tomorrow… He’s gotta beat Rockford rush hour and get to school by 10:30 for his orientation and training. He will be a student ambassador over the next few days for new students.
Wish him luck in the new school year!