Another month. And a year approaches.

…and ANOTHER month’s passed right on by. The other day was the 2nd Monday AFTER the Griefshare group/cycle ended.

I’ve had another birthday. First one without Dad. Where in 2021 I took a day off work and went to Columbus, hit IKEA and a couple Half-Price Books, and Big Fun Columbus…this year I did my best to go head-in-the-sand and stay “off the radar.” THOUGH I did wind up going to Geek’s Gambit for Flesh and Blood, and with others trying a new “One Piece” card game (based on the “One Piece” manga series) I joined in; and also wound up staying after with several others “just hanging out” at the shop. Something I don’t think I’ve really done–in that way–anywhere in YEARS.

Went to a comic show and found it to be mostly a waste, though I found a chunk of Alpha Flight issues.

Got to meet up with Ben at another gameshop for Flesh and Blood back on the 11th; AND I actually legitimately WON a couple games. Won a drawing for a “generic” “Dynesty” set playmat, as well as a set of “Shi**y Xmas Present” promotional cards.

LAST weekend met up with friends at Ben’s and we got some Heroquest and Sentinels of the Multiverse in.

I’ve also had that “clicking” moment for RA Salvatore’s DRIZZT DO’URDEN books–where I’ve been aware of them for 25+ years but never had any particular intrest (MY “D&D World”/setting of choice has always been DRAGONLANCE). But something finally “clicked” for me and got me interested…and said interest has been exacerbated by coming across a teaser/trailer thing on YouTube featuring a poem/lullaby written by RA Salvatore…and narrated by Benedict Cumberbatch.

But as I sit here typing–the workday, workweek, workYEAR fading into history–it occurs to me how much of that “One Year Since…” I’m in for over the next few days.

Some shelves in the basement have now been up for a year. Heck, aside from adding a couple things to a couple of them, they remain virtually untouched in this time. And a couple of the shelves and their contents I don’t think I HAVE touched in a year; since working with them shortly after getting off work on the final workday of 2021.


The days immediately after. The 28th. And then the 29th-into-30th. That night that firmly placed a “before” and “after” break into my life in a way nothing else had ever done.

And the closer it all gets…I feel like the more frequently I’m seeing stuff–articles, anecdotes, whatever–suggesting that this first year, this first Christmas “after” may not even BE the hardest one.

I guess time is gonna tell.

Sunday night after errands

[ I initially typed the unedited version of this as a private message to a groupchat with a couple of friends Sunday night, and realized it’s the sort of thing weighing on me more frequently lately, AND I haven’t posted in this blog in awhile, so with some small edits, sharing here. For better or worse…]

I keep seeing Dad in the edge of my mind. Like I always did…before. I want to get the iced coffee he loved. I want to get the lemonade he drank. I want to call him to see if he wants hard boiled eggs or chips or ANYthing/whatever.

Or call to see if he had dinner yet–should I get an extra thing of salmon for him, too?

I want to go into the house and step out to the cave to let him know I’m home, after greeting mom in the living room. Or holler out to the cave “DAISEY!! It’s JUST me!!!” and then make my way out there.

Tell him some of the groceries I got, some thoughts for meals for the week.

He’d ask what else I bought. Did I get that ice cream he was wanting? What about olives? Tomatoes?

And maybe I’d have remembered, maybe not.

He’d inquire if I bought any “figures”–toys/etc.

Tell him yup, or nope, as would be the case.

Then he’d grab his phone–he might have something saved to show me he’s looking at on eBay. Tee shirt for himself, or a vest for the dog; maybe something he thought was best that I might like cuz it’s got Superman on it or some other comic-y thing.

Or he saw a shirt I might like, or shoes.

Or ask me if a package came yet? Was it for him, or something if mine?

Fill me in on what he was up to while I was out. Dave called, or he called Lynn, or talked to Janice or Becky or Sue. Fill me in on “news” from Zanesville–extended family.

I’d relish the conversation, the little things. But eventually I’d have to go put groceries away. Cold stuff.

TOO OFTEN he’d ask if I wanted to watch Blue Bloods, or 911. Always thought there’d be “later.” Figured we’d all three of us (him, me, mom) catch up over Christmas.

Now I have all the nights I could want to do whatever, but never gonna get to catch up on Blue Bloods with him. Or 911.

And I’m typing all this on the phone in the car cuz I don’t wanna go in.

It’s not that I AM pretending, but it’s like if I’m out here, it’s like any other time getting home from a grocery run and such. I’m out in the car, he’s inside unware of my being back yet. When I go in, Daisey’s gonna bark, but it’ll be WITHOUT Dad, and nothing I can do can change that or fix that.