Before July 26th my good memories are slowly coming back to me. So before you start reading this post, beware…you might smile. It’s a long post. I hope you read it to the end. Its taken me a few days to write. Enjoy and Happy New Year.
This blog post should be about new beginnings. A new year. A new chapter. Or a new book per se. Cheers to 2018 right? Well, yes, goodbye 2017. Good riddance. So many bad memories.
I don’t remember specific dates because honestly time is a blur before July. PTSD is an ugly thing on the memory. We took family pictures with Amanda Anderson in January at her new home in Abernathy (our last family portraits with my baby boy). Amanda has been taking our pictures for about 8 years now. She has watched Daniel and Zane grow up. If I can give you any advice at all, any that you will take to heart, it’s to take family pictures. They last forever. I tell my brides the same thing. Cut out the guest gifts and spend more on your photographer, I promise your photos will last longer. I can tell you our conversations from a year ago at Tin Barn Farms. That’s how vivid my memory comes and gos. I might forget it tomorrow. But I will always have those pictures. Thank you Amanda 💞.
In February Carmen was rushed to the er with pnemonia. No this wasn’t a good memory but in March she made a miraculous recovery and was released 40 days later from the hospital. Almost a year later she is doing ok, not fabulous, but ok.
In March Joe and I were able to buy Zane his 2012 Dodge Challenger. Memaw, Pawpaw, Zeagan and I surprised him, along with his squad at school during lunch. His squad came out to the house to help him clean it up. Joe’s favorite picture was taken that day of Zane and Zeagan. Zeagan was sitting on the engine smiling while Zane had his leg propped up on the bumper. Joe wears Zane’s Samsung watch and this picture is the screen saver. Zeagan loves to press the button and every time says “Zane Zane!”. Zane officially took Joe’s place under the carport and the truck was left out in the cold haha! As Joe put it, the two “spoiled brats” parked under the carport.
The pool from last year had dried out because we never got around to winterizing it. Well the boys got a bright idea to put a mattress in it and set the projector up. The white wall of the pool was a perfect screen and the high walls kept the wind out. Crazy boys. We got up the next morning and couldn’t find the kids. Looked everywhere. Joe glanced out the back door and saw someone (Austin) in the pool, went out there and I’m not sure if he’s ever laughed harder. Zane and two of the others were still curled up in blankets on the mattress asleep. It was probably 50° out there. Chip bags and corn dog wrappers everywhere. Oh those boys.
Zane was also released from his neurosurgeon because he was doing so well. I wish now we had done more research on the effects of chiari vs anxiety and depression. Who knows.
In April we had Easter. Zane enjoyed sleeping on the weekends but never argued about going to church on holidays with the family. Oh he looked so nice in that blue shirt. So handsome (that’s what I chose for him to wear for his forever home along with his 5FDP t-shirt) . And I actually wore color. I wore a pink dress, not black. That was rare. Joe had on a green checkered shirt. So handsome too. Zane helped the kids Easter egg hunt in the front yard of the church then we went to my sister’s house for lunch and hunted eggs again. He enjoyed watching Zeagan hunt for the first time (in his gray Converse). We bought a bubble blower for the kids and he helped with that too.
April is also when I took some of my favorite pictures of Zane and Zeagan together in the back yard. I will never forget that moment. It was a beautiful afternoon about 4:30. Zane had just gotten home from school and came out back to see what I was doing. Zeagan was playing on the porch and as soon as Zane walked out, his eyes lit up. Of course Mia was with Zane, following him as always. I’ve mentioned it before, Zane rarely let me take pictures unless it was with Zeagan. But he let me snap away. He was wearing his Guns N Roses t-shirt, that perfect smile, that gorgeous hair. My mom always said he should have been a model but Zane was too modest. And he loved that little boy more than anything in the world.
In May we bought Zeagan his first power wheels 4-wheeler. Zane worked with him over and over. We took it outside and that’s where I got that video of him arguing with Mia while teaching Zeagan. Mia wanted to play and Zane wanted to teach! I’m so glad I was able to get that video. I loved sitting on the back porch with Zane. That was our thing. We did that most afternoons when I was off and I had Zeagan. In the evenings I would lose him to his friends or to his room. I would only see him when there was food.
In June, we went on our family vacation to Ruidoso. According to TJ that was the best vacation ever. We took Daniel, Adrianna, Zane and TJ ziplining at Ski Apache, went shopping, and just hung out at the cabin. Zane asked a week or so before we left if he could go fishing with his Pawpaw and of course I couldn’t say no. I don’t know how long it will be till I can go back to Ruidoso again without being sad, but at least I know Zane was happy while we were there. When we got back we bought a new pool. And that was a fiasco to say the least. Three pools later and it was finally a winner. Joe and the boys worked hard on the pools and the deck. I never even put my toe in the water this year. Koii was also playing softball in June and July. Zane didn’t really care for the game but he wanted to see her play. He came with me to one of her games. Boy was she happy to see her cousin. Those kids looked up to him so much.
In early July Joe and Zane put a cold air intake system in the Challenger to help his car run better. What Zane asked for his momma got. It was well known. And soon after him and his dad put on the black spoiler. Zane was pretty proud of it. He said it made a big difference on how it made his car look. And then a week or so later, him, Joe and his Uncle Dale put the infamous Punisher decal on the hood of his car.
Let’s not forget Sunday July 23rd, the last time I made Chicken Spaghetti and needed bowls. As much as a house full of stinky boys drove me bonkers, I miss every missing spoon, dirty bowl, moldy cup, empty cabinet, nasty stiff sock, ill-arranged dishwasher, dish in the sink, pee spot on the toilet moment. Good times.
Then on Monday July 24th I clearly remember standing around the island in the kitchen talking about a memorial for our allergy Dr, Dr. Herman. It was on the 26th. Zane told me he wanted to go. So he was going to meet me in Lubbock that evening for a dedication. I took a picture of Zeagan in the back yard with only one shoe on and that evening I went to a softball game. Tuesday I went to work as usual and picked up Daniel and Adrianna’s dog Myssi from the vet after her surgery. Everything seemed fine. Zane came out to love on Myssi. We talked for a bit then he left to go meet friends. The last time I saw Zane’s sweet face and heard his voice which was my last good memory was the morning of the 26th at 6am. I had just gotten home from the gym. He was going to the bathroom, I was in the kitchen. I said good morning, he said good morning too. That was it. That was the very last time I’ve said good morning out loud.
The other day Joe and I were eating at Dairy Queen and all of a sudden Gary, our town homeless man, came to mind. When Zane was in Intermediate School, he would see Gary walking in his coveralls down College Avenue every morning. If he didn’t see him he would be so worried. He would ask me if we could look for him after school the next day if we didn’t see him soon. But Gary always showed up. As Zane grew up and started to drive, he told us that when him and his squad would go eat at DQ and Gary was outside, he would take his food outside and sit with him. No talking, just give him half of his food. This was our son. Compassionate. Sweet. Always worried about others. Put others before himself.
“True generosity is an offering; given freely and out of pure love. No strings attached. No expectations. Time and love are the most valuable possession you can share.”
― Suze Orman
If you can’t think of a new years resolution, I can give you a few good ideas:
Think before you speak.
Be careful who you judge. Behind their smile and blue eyes, they might be in pain.
Tell people you love them. Not just when you need something.
Do not take advantage of anyone. But don’t let anyone take advantage of you.
Just because someone smiles one day does not mean they are ok the next. Ask them if they’re ok, and then ask again. And again.
I know for a FACT tomorrow is NOT promised.
Chris Cornell of Soundgarden ~ 7/20/64-5/18/17
Chester Bennington of Linkin Park ~ 3/20/76-7/20/17
Zane Timmons ~ 10/6/00-7/26/17