We are out of eggs… So I resort to the cereal cabinet. In my head, “Mmm Grits… Those are Summer’s Grits. Would she be OK with me eating these?” The moral dilemma stretches a few seconds. If I don’t eat them, nobody will. Summer and I did share a love of grits. That was one of the ways I knew she had some Eric in her.
Every time I walk down the hall and pass her room…. I wonder how long we will leave it alone. What’s the right amount of time? Summers bed still holds her box of ashes along with art and items from the visitation displays. Angela and I need to get up to Fairbury together and talk to the cemetery manager about a resting place for those ashes. Maybe I should have taken a few more days off work. But I was not sure I could handle more time at home and the looming “Thank You” duty. I came home from work for lunch one day and found Angela, Linda, Julie, and Aiden all working diligently on cards in an assembly-line fashion on cards. I told Aiden I was proud of him… He is a better man than I!
Angela is moving through all the cards and gifts that have been all over the kitchen table since the visitation. The funeral and visitation materials are almost all gone and the flowers that were not live made their exit last weekend. (They were getting stinky!)
The kid’s bathroom is remodeled. Thanks to Ekhoff Construction. They got it done pretty quickly. I say “kids bathroom” because that’s what we have always called it. I really cannot imagine calling it Aiden’s bathroom. But, calling it the “kids” gives me pause, and then the brain starts spinning 1000 miles a second. I imagine this is what PTSD flashbacks are like. Any small thought can set your brain off. I had one at work the other day. I was in my office and I looked at a picture that I had open on my google photos program. I teared up in seconds.
I am not a narcissist. Beyond all the nice comments you all had on the last post… I had a chance to google the word. I think my self-exploitation falls far short of the definition. I then googled “Exhibitionist”. I don’t think that defines a blogger either. So, I guess I will quit labeling myself and just keep posting.
I got together with Daryl and Gabe this week and we recorded a new Throwin’ Wrenches podcast. It’s the car show I have done with Daryl for nearly 5 years now, or is it 4? I reserved the first segment of the show (the subscription-based side) for a candid talk about Summer and our final trip out west. Again, Narcissist? I think I talk candidly to strangers with no fear of commentary from the audience. But the action of talking out loud, outside of my own head, is therapeutic. It is.
Thanks to those guys and our regular listeners for tolerating me.
If you want the 120 minutes of car talk and Eric talking about life, death, and estate sales… I also ponder what a good life is and how much faith is too much. It’s a bit scattershot, as is my head right now so listen at your own risk. There is something to offend everyone in this one.
You can buy the ep for 2.99 on Apple. Sorry! That’s just the way we do the preshow. Oh, there are a few swear words in that episode as well. That’s not normal for our show… But it’s just the mood I was in.
Michael and Stephanie Honan came by our house this past week to drop off “something”. Stephanie has been a longtime customer at Fort’s and she texted me saying they wanted 5 minutes. Well, we have common ground in a terrible club, both of us losing a child too soon. I should have known our 5 minutes was going to turn into 45 minutes standing out front of the house talking about a whirlwind of subjects.
Two things stuck out from the side conversation I was having with Michael.
- We are allowed to have fun again. Walking into Friday Night Lights car show last night was one of the first times I have been out in public enjoying conversations about other things than St. Jude. I was glad to hear Mike talk about the internal moral dilemma that happens when you smile. If I am grieving… Do I need to look like I am grieving all the time? Wes stopped by the store the other day and we were laughing and talking on the showroom floor. When Wes left… Chris, a sales manager, walked up to me and said “It’s great to hear your laugh in the store again”. (So damn Tim-like) It was good to laugh. Wes knows what we went through, so I didn’t feel that guilt that I was “cheating” on my grief period.
- Mike asked if I was confused or surprised by the people who “did” and “did not” show up or reach out over the past few weeks. I actually have thought about that a lot and I told a few stories on the preshow about my personal failing as a “friend” to others in similar situations over the years. I hold no ill will or animosity towards anyone who didn’t know what to do or say. I have been there. So, I was again reassured by this conversation that I was on the right path in my mindset.
I was really glad they stopped by. Their son passed suddenly in a car accident 12 years ago and they know the pain.
They have also done an amazing job of using their son’s life as a way to help other kids in Tremont and Pekin. Including our daughter… They came by and gave a nice donation to Summer’s scholarship foundation. They also know all the ins and outs of foundations and taxes.
We live a few miles apart… I think we will be talking a lot more.