Steppin’ Out

We’ve begun the selection and creation process for this year’s anniversary video.

Due to a lot of changes, and the fact I’m joining with my very good friend, Edgar Solis, to create a new blog: The 365 Dadsafter March 26th, my posts will most frequently move to that new blog and shy away from here.

There are reasons for this, reasons that border a lot of areas of concern for me that you may or may not understand.

First, and foremost, is the fact that there’s little or no information for single Dads out there.  What is there is usually written in such a way – much like the blogs for Moms – that assume you know a lot.  Now . . . I dove in, head first, to the life of a sole parent.  I cook, nearly every night, and it’s something fairly healthy and definitely homemade.  I make their snacks myself, with only a small stack of lowfat Pringles to give them some salt and crunch in their lunches.  Please, no complaints, it’s not even a full serving.  I learned to do laundry.  I talk with my kids.  I do whatever I can to make their journey on this new road easier than they think.

And I fail.  A lot.

So my friend, Edgar, and I both thought that others could benefit from our failures – others who don’t have the courage or know-how or too much pride to ask for the help.  I don’t criticize that, I was there.  I was failing and when I did I had to deal with the Midwestern attitude and pride and swallow it all.

I’ve made a mess in the last week of my own household, through my own actions.  They’re not the best decisions, these ones in the last week, but I had to make them.  Given the circumstances, I’d do them again.

So we’re working on doing another video, on the 26th of March.  To recap: March 26th is an eventful day for me.  On the 26th of March I married Andrea Andrews, making her my wife.  On March 26th 2011, eighteen years to the day . . . she died.  She went into the hospital on Tuesday and was gone by Saturday.  It was that fast.  We have (had) four kids – two girls and twin boys.  Two teenage girls and twin 9-year-old boys.

The last two years have been a journey, and an amazing one.  I guess many think that I’ve detailed every single thing that’s happened here and you’d be wrong.  What I detailed was snapshots of our lives.  It may be like looking at a Geographic photo from my friend, Joel Sartore.  There is a story in the snapshot, but it’s never the full story.  That we are living . . . which is why I have the site: Our Story Begins.  I won’t stop posting, but cannot, after the 26th, continue the daily posts while working with Edgar to make videos, audio recordings, and articles that truly will help people.

So why did I write this blog?  Two reasons: first, I needed the cathartic release.  I had evenings alone, and truly alone for the first time in 20 years.  I had to get through that.  My kids needed a Dad who was strong, caring, and structured, which led to me being weak, tired, and chaotic at night.  The writing kept me centered and the posts kept me grounded.

Today . . . I’m a different person.  My kids are getting older and the fact that I detail parts of our lives here, every day, gets harder and harder.  I wanted them to know my story, my love story, what their Mom was like, what we struggled with, and over two years and hundreds of posts I did that.  I have kept that.  It’s our story.  It’s also the story of how, over two years, we survived and also thrived, much to the surprise, delight, and sometimes consternation of others.

So March 26th, our second video, God willing, will post.  We’ll not dwell on what we lost, that’s not us.  I’ve told that story.  This is the story of year 2.  The song we’ve chosen may shock or possibly offend a few overly-sensitive people, but it matches how we feel, our humor, and our lives.

Though as I’ve said before, we’re stronger together than when we’re apart.

Here’s last year’s video, for a glance . . . but this year’s!  I hope to make that one even better.

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