October did not start out easy. This time of year will always remind me of my dad and as I talked about earlier we have a lot of memories from last year that made this month even harder. Zack and I took over decorating the house for Halloween the second weekend of October. My dad took his decorating very seriously so I knew I had a lot of hype to live up to. I was happy to do it but I kept felt like I was stepping on someone else’s turf. It was hard because my dad did his decorations in such a particular way and when I got out there I couldn’t remember where anything went. When it was done the house looked great but I still felt like I had done it wrong. My mom seemed to take the decorating pretty hard too. As I was leaving to go to Zack’s she started to cry and shared a lot of the same feelings I was having about this month too. It was just going to be hard but if we kept busy it might turn out ok.
The next day I took Zack to a pumpkin patch near my house that I hadn’t been to since I was a kid. It was a great de-stressor to the previous day. I had just been wound up tight about the decorations and about leaving my mom alone when she was so sad. We spent the day walking around and the evening carving pumpkins. I’m a sucker for fall fun activities.
The following week we had my neighbors, Jen and Nick’s wedding. It was a perfect distraction because it was a wedding full of our neighbors and some of them are our closest friends. Just how close can neighbors be? Well, Jen and Nick had a table set up with some candles and a metal tree that held pictures on it. It was for all family that should have been at the wedding but passed away before it happened. My dad was included on the tree. It was such a sweet sentiment and it reminded me of how truly lucky I am to have people like that in my life.
This past weekend was a blast. On Friday I went on a “witches walk” with my mom, a few neighbors, a few of my friend’s moms, and some other neighborhood women. Basically me and my neighbors Jess and Jen were the youngest people there! It was a little bar crawl in the neighborhood where we dressed up like witches and acted like fools. There’s really no other way to describe it. We had such a blast though and it was the first time in a couple weeks I had seen my mom feeling better. I was worried for a while there because although she didn’t say she was sad or upset you could just see it on her face. I think she needed a damn good night and man, she certainly got one.
I ended my marathon weekends with a Blackhawks game on Monday night. The game was Hockey Fights Cancer night so the Chicago Affiliate of PanCan was there. My friends Cassie and Conor joined Zack and I for the game and during the first intermission we went down to the 100 level to visit the PanCan table. It was great because I had recently decided to volunteer for them and I got to meet some of the people I’ve been emailing back and forth. When I walked up they said they had just been talking about me too so that could either be good or bad… haven’t decided yet.
Anyways, the goal of October was to keep busy and I’ve certainly done that and it was pretty successful in terms of keeping my mind off things. I’m not sure if my mom feels the same way but with October coming to a close I have to say it wasn’t as bad as I had anticipated. I had my bad days still but I’ll take a few bad days over an entire bad month. This weekend I have a mass to go to at my church that is celebrating the lives of all the parishioners lost this year which includes my dad. I’m not really a church person and since the funeral I find myself getting overly emotional at masses but I know I need to go to this. Luckily after mass I’m going to a Halloween party so that should certainly lighten the mood afterwards.
My dad’s birthday is coming up on 11/2 but I’m not really thinking much about that right now. I convinced my mom to go on a trip with her friends starting on his birthday and ending on the 6th. I thought with me going to work all day and her being retired she didn’t need to sit in the house and think about his birthday all day. At least if she’s sad now she’ll be sad around her friends who are also going to be sad about my dad. I can’t even begin to fathom how I’ll do on his birthday and I’m not even going to try. Like I said, I get myself too worked up so I’m just going to take it as it comes. I’ll just keep staying busy, busy, busy.