Monday, June 29, 2009

Fifa finals

Dear Dan,

USA came in second in the Fifa finals! Their first time and they came in second to Brazil. Not too shabby on their part. It was amazing. The first 1/2 they were more cohesive than the second 1/2. I think partly because they realized they were beating Bra-f'ing-zil by 2 points and it shook them up.

Of course, Brazil came back with 3 goals and USA lost. But we have arrived and we are in it now!


Soccer, of course, made me think of you and your soccer days. I'll bet you were watching with me, weren't you?

I love you, Danny.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Rob Thomas

Dear Dan,

Rob Thomas has announced a big tour. And guess what! I'm not planning to go!

At another time in another place I would have been planning on attending the East Coast shows -- at least the last five. But as I said -- in another time and place.

One of the worst things I deal with now is the thought of you on the ledge. What was going through your mind? What were your last thoughts. Did you suffer or was it quick? Did you lay there and lose conciousness or were you already gone?

Did you change your mind when it was too late?

These are the things that will send me into a downward spiral if I consider them for too long.

And what does that have to do with Rob Thomas?

The person I used to go to all the concerts, a person I considered one of my closest friends, was one of the people I called the day after. I did something very stupid myself. I told her I wondered if you changed your mind. She said "Yes, he did. People who survive all say they changed their minds."

How many ways does that not apply to you and your situation? 1) You didn't survive. You did it in such a way to guarantee you would not survive. 2) Your's was not an attempt. You wanted to succeed and you did.

3) You did not let on to anyone -- not your closest friends, not your family, no one -- that you were planning anything like this. Not a single person had been given any hints. You covered your plans so well that your closest friends started calling around to see who was the last to see you. They thought it was a murder and someone might have seen something. It wasn't until I told them that any of them knew it was suicide! And then no one believed it because there had been no signs.

And who says things like that to someone who has lost a loved one the way we lost you?!

So Rob takes the hit here. I've pretty much lost interest in going to concerts very far out of town and road trips for concerts are not something I want to contemplate.

So not your fault but just one more side effect of your suicide.

I love you bro.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Have you any idea?

Dear Dan,

Have you any idea what the later implications of your suicide have been?

First of all, at almost two years since the date, we still think of you every day. Every single day. When Dad died after a year or so I began to get used to the idea he was no longer around. But you -- never a day goes by that you are not part of the conversation.

Two nights ago, mom woke up and asked if I called her. When I said no, she started to cry because she realized she was having a dream about you and you were the one calling out to her.

Today, she used you as blackmail. "I already lost one child...."

For some reason I keep getting ready to pick up the phone and call you. Once was because I found an interesting website with family history. Of course that reminded me of the emails you sent with the site where you found grandad's military papers and the census records.

But all this is ok since it's better than the alternative -- which is not thinking about you every day.

I love you Danny.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Frog in the pool

Dear Dan,

There was a photo in the daily newspaper this morning that made me think of you. I stepped out to get mom's paper and there this was, looking at me. When mom saw it she showed it to me and asked if I noticed it. Then we both called your name.

CDT/Melissa Doss

These guys are installing a frog fountain in the new Park Forest pool. I want to see it once it's working. What a hoot! If we were kids we would be bugging (ha ha -- get it?? bugging) mum to take to the pool instead of the one we usually went to.

I think when we were kids this pool was a membership only pool and the only way to get membership was to live in Park Forest. Now I think it's open to anyone.

Looking at this photo and thinking about our summers at the community pool as well as the different ones in our backyard over the years really made me smile. All because of you. This was a good day.

I love you Danny.

Monday, June 8, 2009

"We are family"

Dear Dan,

A friend of mine and I saw "UP" this weekend. A very sweet movie that I think you would have enjoyed. The subject came up about family and what constitutes a family.

You and I talked about this years ago when Dan Quayle got into the whole "Murphy Brown" discussion. I've never subscribed to the whole "blood is family" theory. Nor did you. A family is a group of people you gather to you that may or may not be related to you by blood.

It was about that time that you were coaching soccer and your team was headed for a tourney in Ohio. You drove a group in a van. At a rest stop along I-80 a couple came up to you and asked if you were all related. Simultaneously the entire lot of you sang "We are family. I got all my brothers with me." The couple walk away backwards and slowly.

I would have chosen you as family even if we hadn't been born into the same one.

I love you Danny. ::smiles::

Friday, June 5, 2009

Lamb chops

Dear Dan,

Almost two years have gone by and you are still a topic of conversation and a thought every single day. You're still here and that's the way I want to keep you. I dread the time I look back over the day and find that you haven't been there. I don't want that to ever happen. I carry that around in the "what if" backpack. "What if" I thought of you as often when you were alive as I do now that you're gone. Would that have made a difference? I know the answer is "no" but the question is always there.

A recent thought was of the time you made lamb chops for me. I don't remember ever having lamb chops so you decided we should have them one evening. They smelled fabulous and I could not wait to sink my teeth into them. The chops looked magnificent as you pulled them out of the oven.

You served one to me. I cut it and took a bit. I stopped. Something didn't taste quite right. There was a taste I couldn't quite ... um .... wait. I know what that is! Joy! Lemon fresh Joy dish soap.

So I have to ask the question -- "Dan, what did you cook this in?" You showed me the baking dish. "Dan, where did you get the dish?" You got it from the sink. "Did you wash it out before you put the chops in?" No. All that was in there was water.

Not exactly. I had put the dish in the sink to soak earlier in the day. There was water and Joy detergent. When you looked, all you saw was water so it was good to go.

I laid on the counter and laughed so hard at that while youo stood there eating, telling me you didn't taste anything wrong.

That never fails to make me laugh, even now.

I love you Danny.