Seven Years
7 min read

Seven Years

Seven puppie
Photo by Jametlene Reskp / Unsplash

My mother, Kathy, passed away from lung cancer seven years ago on June 1, 2015. This series of posts allows me to write to her, informing her of the things she's physically missed within the past year. This is part of my grief process, and it allows me to really connect with the past year of my life.

ALSO, goodness am I late on this again.

Previous Years

August 2021

  • Cindy gave Micah his first haircut! He was a trooper, and boy did he look dapper!
  • The COVID-19 vaccine was fully approved by the FDA. This replaced the Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) and made a whole bunch of people lose their excuses with receiving the vaccine.
  • Mattie started Kindergarten! While Macie and Micah cried about missing her, Mattie was just so excited to start school.
  • David's 37th birthday! He's getting super old, and he should probably just retire by now!
  • Your 58th birthday! I miss you a whole heck of a lot all year long, but especially on your birthday.
  • Cloverleaf installed a whole new field, along with stadium upgrades including a fancy new 8-lane track. As a coach, I love these upgrades, and they're a wonderful addition for the community at-large.

September 2021

  • Our 7th wedding anniversary. We celebrated by renting a cabin in Hocking Hills and just take a few days away for ourselves.
  • We celebrated Grandma and Grandpa's 50th wedding anniversary in Dover with a surprise party. We invited a bunch of family and their friends surprise them at the Elks. It was a great night!
  • Cloverleaf hosted their annual Cross Country meet. As usual, Cindy and I helped where we could! I was emcee and DJ, while Cindy was basically a woman on fire with both pictures and videos!
  • We refinanced our mortgage to get a chunk of cash out in order to purchase the property behind ours! It's a great investment, and I'm excited to use it more as the years go on.

October 2021

  • Macie turns four! When did that happen? We celebrated with a Bluey-themed birthday.
  • I got my COVID-19 booster and flu shot on the same day. It did not go well the next day. Let's just say I should have taken a nap.
  • Honestly, we watched a lot of football in October. Cindy and I have season tickets to Ohio State, so we're down in Columbus almost every home game. It's a great time to spend with just Cindy.

November 2021

  • Ohio State lost to Michigan for the first time in what seems like forever. That's all I've got to say about that.
  • Tommie turns 21! She's essentially a fully-formed adult at this point. You would've loved to hear the stories of her first legal night out.
  • We upgraded the girls from their toddler beds into a fancy bunk bed. It honestly reminds me of growing up with David where we had bunk beds basically most of our lives. They love it.
  • Thanksgiving with Cindy's family! I ate entirely too much food, and it was wonderful.
  • As part of our yearly traditions, we took family photos with Little Bear Photography, and the kids did just great. I cannot wait to see how they turn out.

December 2021

  • Mattie turns six. Our fiery redhead is such a great member of the family, and she provides such a unique parenting experience (both good and bad!).
  • Cindy's birthday! She's the best wife a man could have, and the best mother any kid could ask for. I'm a pretty lucky guy.
  • Christmas Eve at Grandma and Grandpa's followed by Christmas Day at Cindy's family. Miss you a whole heck of a lot right now.
  • Family photos got delivered! Lauren did a great job, and these pictures look absolutely amazing.
  • The dogs got sprayed by a skunk! This happened literally the day before we traveled to Disney (see below), so it was really great timing. First time for everything!
  • Santa Breakfast with everyone. The kids finally sat with Santa without crying and screaming and running away! I'm chalking this one up as a win.
  • The girls have dance class every Tuesday and Wednesday this season, so I get the opportunity to spend a lot of time with just Micah. We typically head out to dinner during this time, which I'm very thankful for.

January 2022

  • Off to Disney over New Years and the first week of the year! The eight of us (+Carol) had an absolutely wonderful time. We stayed at a resort in Disney proper for the first time, and it was totally worth it.
  • Joey turns 20! He's grown into quite the young man, and I couldn't be more proud.
  • Indoor Track practice starts for another season! I love this part of my life, and I'm especially appreciative of both my family and my employer for allowing me to do this.
  • Our food disposal broke, so I live-tweeted my attempts at installing the new one. It was an adventure, let me tell you what. Doing these types of things around the house really make me feel like I'm growing and contributed to society as a person, too.

February 2022

  • We went sled riding at a local park, and the kids had an absolutely wonderful time once they got past the climbing part.
  • For the first time in my life, I tried wearing Breathe Right strips while sleeping. This was LIFE CHANGING. Is this what it's like to breathe appropriately through my nose? I should probably talk to an ENT about this.
  • Mattie started Girl Scouts! She's currently a Daisy, and her troop is based out of Cloverleaf, which is great!
  • Mattie and I's first Father/Daughter Dance happened. She was all dolled up and looked beautiful. We had a great time--she spent most of the time running around with friends, and I (as is typical for me) made some friends of my own with the other dads.

March 2022

  • Micah turns three. I honestly feel like the last three years have just SPED by. It's crazy to see how grown up he is, and how fast it's happened. I love this little dude.
  • My 36th birthday. My family, as always, is amazing. I miss you a lot on family holidays like that.
  • Lots of track practice, and the first track meet! We hosted our first larger track meet since I've been coaching. Of course it snowed (it's Ohio), but it was great getting the opportunity to run the meet.

April 2022

  • We all went down for the Ohio State Spring Game. It was really great to get the kids into Ohio Stadium for the first time, even if they had absolutely no idea what was going on!
  • In the similar "repair everything" vein, I successfully repaired our dishwasher! I had to completely disassemble and reassemble the entire interior, but it no longer leaks into the basement, which I'll call a win.

May 2022

  • The absolute worst parenting night of my life. After a Taco Bell night, the kids went to bed at a normal 8:30pm timeframe. Around 11pm, Mattie and Macie woke up screaming. Cindy and I ran in to a complete warzone--vomit was everywhere. Micah woke up having to vomit about an hour later. This continuined literally all night. Cindy's a superhero.
  • Yet another round with our water heater--the bottom element corroded again. A pretty easy replacement, all said.
  • I installed a water sprayer to replace our existing soap dispenser. This was a super easy install, and now we get on-demand hot water that can be used to spray dishes!
  • Apparently I did a whole bunch of DIY in the house in May! I replaced our water heater completely. This one was a little more involved, mainly because I had to reroute some water lines.
  • Mattie's first year of school comes to an end! She loved Kindergarten, and she said she's going to miss so many of her friends over the summer. She's a model student, being both helpful and meticulous in her studies.
  • The girls had their Dance Recital over an entire weekend. Tommie and Cindy both helped the entire group of dancers get ready. Grandma, Grandpa, Kevin, and David all came up to watch one of the Recitals, so it was great to have them up!

June 2022

  • A number of Cloverleaf athletes competed at the state meet. They all did amazingly well, and we had some very high placers! Super proud of every athlete, from the state placers to the JV athletes, and everyone in between.
  • For my summer Track project, I created a storage system for all the shot puts and discs within the storage box. This took me most of the month, so it was great to get it completed and installed before vacation!
  • We went on our family vacation to Deep Creek Lake, Maryland. We essentially spent the entire week on our rented boat, which everyone loved so much. I think we may have a new type of vacation destination beyond Disney and the beach!

July 2022

  • Cindy traveled to England for work the week after we got back from vacation. The week following that, I traveled to both France and Poland for work for a week. Needless to say, we didn't spend much time together, but it was good to get to become world travelers for a short bit.
  • Mattie's officially at the age in which she has multiple birthday parties to attend over the summer. I love that she has close friends that she can celebrate with.

August 2022

  • So far in August, the girls have had dance practice regularly over the entire month. For this upcoming dance season, they are both in competitive dance, which means the time investment they need to put in is much higher. They both love it, so Cindy and I are more than happy to have them participate.
  • Mattie started First Grade. I love everything about how excited she is to go to school every day. She gets on the bus at our house every morning, and we get the opportunity to see her there every morning. These are the small parts of being a parent that I absolutely love.

Roughly 1700 words this time around, and most of them don't compare to how much I miss having you around to talk to. I call David most days, which I love doing, but I really wish I could talk to you as well.

I miss you, Mom.

Love you