This week last year was one of hope, travel, and possibility. Just like this year, it began with a birthday party for one of Alastair's friends, but that's where the similarities end.
I had just started a new job. Just over a month into it, I was learning the ropes and still putting names to faces. I'd done a ton of learning in a short time, and it energized me. I like what I do when it's full of challenge and growth.
Alastair had just turned 3.
I was putting the finishing touches on the race car, truck, and trailer in anticipation of a March 1 track event.
And Amanda was en route to Houston to begin clinical trials.
The energy in the house was amazing. She was still hoarse, and not thrilled about leaving her boy(s), but the prospect of a medical team that wasn't about to write her off--one that might have real results to offer instead of just maintenance--put her in pretty good spirits.
We were in a good place.
Sunday Alastair and I went to the same party. And that night he had a night terror (and another one last night).
He talks about death a lot now. He's adamant that he doesn't want either of us to ever die.
I've been at my job for over a year, and the shiny has largely worn off.
Racing season starts soon, and I've done nothing. Absolutely nothing. I've seriously considered selling all of it, but since I've pre-paid for 4 events, I guess that's not a really viable option.
But I don't feel like I'm depressed, so much as I feel like this is just winter blahs. It's hard to say.
The widow I recently met stirred up a lot of emotion that I thought was long-settled. I certainly don't blame her for it--they're emotions that I've put off or simply ignored for far too long.
And even now, almost a year later, I still don't know how to properly express them. My feelings are like one of those crazy fish balls: thousands of fish swimming in a tight and nigh impenetrable ball. Only what predators do I have to worry about? The tuna of conscience? The shark of responsibility?
At Alastair's check-up yesterday I was asked if he'd been lead-tested. I realized that I had no idea. Not because I'd never been told, but because that, like so many other details of our lives, was something I could always rely on Amanda to remember.
I'm rehashing stuff I've said before. And I'm guessing I will again.
I miss my wife.