In less than two weeks, I’ll be in Atlanta, GA for Dragon*Con. For those that are unaware, it’s a 40,000+ member multi-genre fan convention that is spread out over five hotels in the downtown Atlanta area. Went last year for the first time and had a total blast. On the last day of August, I pile into a van with my friend Nikki, Brad, Niki, and Heather and road trip out there. I assembled the best Marty McFly costume possible and will even spend a day wandering around in costume this year! I get a little more excited every day.
In preparation for that road trip, I went to Mom’s yesterday to sort through an old box of Dad’s hats. Dad collected them for awhile and had a ton to choose from. Most of them were related to various grocery products or golf tournaments he attended. Many memories flooded back as I sorted through them. I laughed, smiled, talked to Mom about them. It was good. As I drove home with a paper grocery sack full of my favorites, I had a strange moment. I almost turned to the sack of hats and said something, like I was about to tell Dad something. Or tell a friend something about Dad. It’s hard to explain. For a very brief moment, I completely forgot where and when I was. I didn’t get upset or anything at the time. It was just odd.
Later in the day, I was watching an episode of The West Wing with my friend Amanda. There’s a moment where one of the characters is celebrating a political victory in a primary election when he suddenly gets a phone call that his father died, which obviously stops him in his tracks. As soon as it happened in the show, I had another moment, where my head tilted slightly. I’d seen the show before, but it’s been awhile. The moment was very similar to the phone call I received, ironically, precisely seven months prior to watching the episode. I didn’t realize what day it was.
After the show was over, I sat in my room for a bit and, well, just sat there. I wasn’t weeping or anything, or even overly sad. I just felt a little disoriented. It’s like that moment of realization where you say, “…oh.”
I feel like I’m moving forward alright, but the setbacks are disappointing. For example, last week I had a dream where I re-married Indi. I woke up and was angry at myself for feeling that way. I went for a run to get past it and pushed myself a bit too hard. Also last week, my team had a little meeting where we talked about how things were going and one piece of feedback they had for me was that I expect too much of myself.
But if I don’t expect a lot out of me, who will?