The holidays are here which means 2017 is almost over. Having lost my dad in this dreadful year, I am beyond excited to put it behind me. Entering 2018 means a lot more than a fresh start, though. It means entering the first year my dad won’t experience on earth. It means whatever happens — good and bad — will not happen to him. Whatever I experience will be shared with one less smiling face. As much as I abhor 2017 for taking him, my heartstrings keep a tight pull on its presence because it is the last year in which Charlie DesRosier lived. He lived. It’s the year that he got a second chance (exactly the one he asked for, at that). 2017 is the year he lived. He took his second chance, and he ran with it. He maximized the life he got more than anything before. In 2017, though he fell into the deep sleep of eternity, he did so without any looming shadows of regret. 2017 took a lot away from me, but it also gave me so much. So, 2017, here are a few of things I thank you for:
- Making my dad’s last months filled with all the love and support in the world.
- Teaching me how strong and resilient my mom is. There is nothing more true than “till death do us part” through my mom and dad’s testimony. True love and soul mates are real, you guys.
- Allowing me the time to not work or go to school, but to purely focus on myself and my family.
- Embracing my aunts, uncles, and cousins, and all of the selfless love they have shown. Special shout out to Auntie Lori for never physically leaving us in the depths of despair and for our rise and shine “buck buck” deliveries.
- Bringing my dad’s extended family to be some of the closest people to me. (Love you Aunt Polly, Ed, & Sharon!)
- Showing my dad that I can prioritize my health and fitness, and for Suraya for keeping this both fun and accountable.
- Understanding true friendship and the people who have travelled every. single. leg. of this journey with me. I’m looking at you, Kate, Colleen, and Julianna!
- Learning how to support others in their greatest time of need. Miss Jennifer, you set this example with your pure intentions of heart.
- Experiencing so much fun during my hiatus! From going to the Price is Right taping and doing Hollywood with my Hollywood twin Amy to Disneyland with my sweet as can be mom to good ole bingo nights with my grandma.
- Writing a blog to serve as my outlet through all of this. I’ve always been a rather open person, and so writing this blog and meeting people through this has been the perfect means of healing for me. From my WordPress followers to my most loyal reader Auntie Tammy (“Chopper”), you keep me growing as an individual and a writer.
To all of my family and friends, I thank you for getting me through 2017. Together we will embrace the vast uncertainties that live in the year ahead. You got me through the hardest event of my life, and I will be here to do the same for you. I could write a book simply on all of you and all you have done for me. As we enter this holiday season, my family will be missing the head of our table. Perhaps we can take comfort in knowing he is in our hearts rather than at our table. If you ask me, that’s a lot closer to us now than ever before.