Friday, August 28, 2020

Dearest Don Raine || ED. 4

This is what 9 looks like on an average day.

Where did the time go and why am I so bad at being consistent for writing on this blog? In short, I think it has been a blur.

Since the last time I wrote to you, you have completed second and third grades and you have had three birthdays herehere, and here 

What is the best way to describe time passing? Like a large trunk of a Japanese Maple, divided and divided and divided; the work is done while we don't even notice.

I am not going to try to recap three (almost) years but I will give you the basics: 

Circa 2018

While we weren't able to travel to Oregon, we did take a few trips. We spent time in Michigan at your great Uncle Don and Great Aunt Laura's beach house with your cousins Benny and Becky, Kevin, and Katie. Your favorite part was swimming in the big waves of Lake Michigan. We went to Disneyworld in Florida with Nana Char and the Herzing fam, and you fearlessly rode every roller coaster you could (now that you were tall enough). And finally, we took another trip to Colorado! You enjoy your time there and Hattie especially spoiled you with a trip to a gaming restaurant where you shot baskets for probably an hour straight. We also spent time with the Christensens and Pattersons, who at this point are also like Hattie, surrogate Aunts and Uncles and cousins. There were also many weekend trips to Apple Canyon (where you suffer extreme boredom but we always tell you that it's good for your brain), Chicago, Grand Ridge, and even one extra fun weekend in Milwaukee, where you went to your first NBA game! We are very fortunate to be able to give you such fun experiences and thank family and friends for their generosity.

Taking in the view from our hike up Castle Rock in Colorado

Could you be any happier? Go Yannis!

Annual Good Neighbor Days festival with Logan and Alexis

In general, you have spent your days learning at school, sledding and swimming with friends and family, playing Mincraft and now Fortnite with your 5 buddies (Charlie, Zach, Jack, Nick, and Rashad), and playing and/or obsessing about all things basketball. You had your first break--a broken arm/wrist from falling off the monkey bars, and you took it like a champ!

2019 basketball with Jack, your dearest friend

With your Aunt, Uncle, and cousins at Great Grandma's Funeral

There seems to be no end to our grief, as we mourned the loss of your Great Grandma Karpiak. Delores was Nana Char's mother and married to Alexander, who you are named after, and who you get your dimples from. In 2018 we also lost GG, your surrogate Great Grandma Phyllis. We weren't able to travel to Oregon for her memorial, which you were disappointed by mostly because you want very badly to return to Oregon and maybe less so for GG because you have very few memories. You were loved by both women and they faithfully prayed for you every day!

In other tough subjects, you have handled COVID, our unexpected pandamic, quite well--with the exception of not being able to play with friends. And while I suspected you would finally begin to have a much more grave consideration of daddy's cancer, you remain nonchalant. Dan continues to have doctor visits and tests, but other than that and a little scare at Disneyworld, he is perfectly normal to you. Although, I can recall times that you have referred to his vertigo as being really bad-definitely much worse than cancer. I don't correct you. Yet.

A little couch time with Hobbes

Your relationships with your daddy and me have been consistent all of this time and I can certainly say that you feel loved, comforted, played with, and probably a little spoiled. We still are slaves to you in the kitchen and I lie with you every night in our bed so you can fall asleep. It is the only thing you ask of me and I know there will be a day you won't want to anymore, so despite the world's likely concerns with such behavior (attachment issues! boundaries!) I gladly accept.

I don't really know what the next part of 2020 holds for us, other than e-Learning during COVID, and continued restrictions on what we do and who we see. You understand mommy also has e-Learning for my Masters degree, which you frequently ask Why? I keep telling you that I am trying to be smarter and better at my writing. During my first e-Residency, you were keen to know everything that was going on. One afternoon you asked what class was next? I explained my workshop, where professors and fellow students would have read and talk about a story I wrote. You were surprised. 

"You wrote a story!?" 


You asked if you could read it and I told you it was just for adults. 

"Are there bad words in it?"

"Yes," I laughed.


You scolded me and we giggled.

Looking very tall and grown up this summer...

I hope we will continue to cuddle, giggle, and share with one another, and that you keep trusting mommy and daddy to know what is best for you and teach you what we value-kindness, independence, a sense of humor, and respect.

(love, mama)


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