It might seem odd to some of you that I still feel the need to Blog on Darrel's Birthday, even though it has almost been 15 years since his passing, but it will always feel like it was yesterday to me. Grief is a very complex, delicate, yet simplistic emotion for anyone to contend with. There have been countless studies and books dedicated to the subject, but there is no one answer, and no right or wrong way to react to such a loss (though scholars claim to have it all figured out). I've said it many times before, and I'll say it yet again...The Day that remembering my son does not cause some kind of reaction is the Day I know I'll need to seek help and/or counseling. I'm not one to dwell or live in the Past, but I am certainly not one to bury or bottle it up either.
With less than a month to go before my daughter's Wedding, all the preparations Lauren and Jacob have made are falling into place. As expected, the stress levels and anxieties are also starting to rise for everyone involved. Thankfully, there are almost no COVID related restrictions left in place to add any additional obstacles to the proceedings. Many of the usual hiccups have had to be dealt with along the way, as well as some more specific to our current family dynamics. I'm hopefully optimistic that all concerned can put aside their past/current differences, if only momentarily, so that Lauren's Big Day can go as smoothly as possible.
The absence of departed Loved Ones are always felt most around Holidays and other Family Gatherings, so I was touched when the Bride told me that there would be a small Memorial Table set-up at the Reception Hall to remember both Darrel and my Mom (who passed away in 2017). It says a lot about how much of a young woman she has become to make sure they are included as well. Both Kira and Lauren had to endure a lot early in their lives, with the loss of their brother, and later, their parent's separation. The fact that they have grown, adapted, and thrived through it all is a great testament to how strong each of them is. Proud Father Moment to be sure!
Speaking of Lauren, when she turned 22 two years ago, she...er...serenaded us with an interesting Karaoke version of Taylor Swift's "22", along with a few other songs. I'll never what kind of music Darrel would have been listening to on his 22nd Birthday today, or if he would have liked performing Karaoke with his friends. I have quite a wide and diverse love of music, but this wasn't always shared by everyone back in the day, so it's impossible to guess which direction he would have gone. Over the years, there are a couple of songs that I have attached my memories of Darrel to, even though on the surface, there really isn't any connection to him at all. When I hear them on the radio or on my iTunes Playlist, they can stir up lots of different emotions, but as I said before, I'm glad they still can have some kind of impact on me.
Thank You once again for taking a moment to help me remember Darrel on his birthday. Many reading this will have never met him, but may feel as though they did after reading some of my Blogs over the years.
Happy Birthday Darrel
Love and Miss You Little Man
P.S. For some reason, Darrel often called Lauren "Mummer". No idea how he came up with that...but he did.
Just A Reminder that the International Neuroblastoma Awareness Week will be taking place from June 13th to June 19th, 2022