Every time, over the past couple weeks, I’ve felt the need to write something, something gets in the way. Something has taken the form of fatigue, my desktop computer melting down, errands, sudden lack of focus and concentration, sound–you name it, it’s stopped me from writing. It all adds up to a need to verbally explode.
Life is all about patterns. Recently, my life has followed the pattern of good news then stress and anxiety then good news then more anxiety. Over the past three weeks, I have watched the three-to-five month wait for my dream car become a three week wait. I have had to scramble to make up the difference between what I planned as a down payment in mid September or early October, and what I would have on hand by late July. I have taken a family trip to San Francisco, my first ever trip to the Bay. I have had to overcome some family issues on that trip. I have driven back into California four days later for a pair of weekend Cubs games against the Padres. I have had repeating dreams of my son suddenly showing up alive. I have had anxiety issues and moments of just breaking down and crying, seemingly at random times, during almost every day of the past week. I have completed everything necessary to take delivery of my dream car next week. Up, down, up, down, up, down…
So much has happened…I don’t know quite where to start. San Francisco is a beautiful city. The view from our hotel in Pacifica was gorgeous, right on the ocean. I got to take my first trip to AT&T Park to watch the Cubs play the Giants. AT&T Park is one of the nicest ballparks I’ve ever had the chance to visit–and I’ve visited quite a few. No, it doesn’t top Wrigley, but I’m not sure what could.
Petco Park in San Diego is another beautiful place to watch a Cubs game. The Cubs played well enough to make the experience all that much better, winning both games in pretty convincing style.
It was nice to see my brother, he flew out from Chicago and drove with me to San Diego. In an interesting switch, he drove both ways and I played the role of passenger. He rented a nice Audi and really wanted to drive it. Quick trip: 26 hours total in San Diego. Stayed in a nice little boutique hotel, Gaslamp Plaza Suites, felt like an old, converted office building.
Kind of the umbrella of good feeling was being invited in late June to actually configure my Tesla Model 3. It was exciting to get the chance to pay that next $2500 deposit and officially choose my car color and other options. Not a ton of options to choose, mind you, just exterior color, enhanced autopilot (or not), wheels (I stuck with the standard 18″ wheels with “Aero” covers), and that was about it. Expensive enough without adding extra options that I didn’t plan on.
As exciting as that late June morning was, it was nothing in comparison to the email I received less than a week later, telling me that my delivery would be scheduled within approximately two to three weeks, and inviting me to set up financing, trade-in, and other final steps leading to delivery. Before I knew it, I had a car loan set up at a decent interest rate, I had a quote on my trade-in, odds and ends finished up…and a delivery appointment for my new car. After a little stressing over the down payment, the countdown to Tesla began.
All of this was in the foreground. The background was me as an emotional wreck. It’s been one of those months where everything reminds me of Micah. Sure, there are the obvious links: seeing a “remember this?” photo or two on Facebook, but there were songs, movies, thoughts about movies, thoughts about actors, random mentions of death or suicide…even thinking about the new Bo Burnham movie, “Eighth Grade,” because Micah was a huge Bo Burnham fan, and I know he would have been demanding to see the movie. I have had days where I was afraid to close my eyes, because I knew I would see an image of Micah: in his hospital bed, in his coffin. I would think about holding his hand that last day, just hoping and praying that he would squeeze my hand back.
I have thought about driving my new car to the cemetery to “show” Micah. I can hear Micah saying that the car is “cool,” but feel his excitement over the car waning in one drive. Oh, sure, he’ll be excited at having a mobile hotspot built into the car. He’d be asking me if there was some way to get the display to hook up to his Xbox for our next road trip. By the time we got home, he’d be shaking his head, “It’s just a car. Whatever.” Although, I guess it’s worth considering that I’m thinking of what 15-year old Micah would have said. Eighteen-year old Micah might have been a lot more interested in cars, wondering if I was going to let him drive it.
Eighteen-year old Micah… While his sister is starting high school next week, would Micah be getting ready to start college? Would he be planning his future?
My days of nonstop Micah thoughts were then, over the past week or so, joined by nonstop nights of Micah thoughts. I usually do not remember my dreams…but on at least three or four occasions over the past week, I have awakened out of dreams featuring Micah, alive and well, and back in my life. Most of them faded quickly after waking, but one in particular has stuck in my head. I remember, in the dream, walking into the ice rink and saying, “You may have heard that Micah is actually back and alive. Any chance you might need a goalie for your team tonight?” Yeah…
Almost a new daily occurrence for me this week: just randomly starting to tear up while working on projects at work, getting choked up when looking at pretty much anything. I have no idea why this is going on. I have had these hyper-emotional periods before…maybe it will pass. Maybe finally getting the chance to sit down and write for a bit will help too.
Another little update…remember that big case I argued before the Court of Appeals? Well, I wound up filing a petition for review to the Arizona Supreme Court after we lost before the Court of Appeals, challenging the way in which the Court of Appeals arrived at its decision. Two days later, the Arizona Supreme Court ordered DCS to file a response to my petition for review. That response is due next week. I could be looking at another brief, or an oral argument before the Arizona Supreme Court, or possibly both. While that’s been percolating, I have picked up another couple sizable appeals, including one with a mind-blowing 15 transcripts to read. All of this while I have already picked up a full month’s caseload of appeals before July 18th. I’m going to have a very busy August.
Thrown into the August mix are my vacation plans. I have thrown my hat in the ring for a possible weekend of volunteering at the big Star Trek Las Vegas convention the first weekend in August. I have plane and baseball tickets for my last planned Wrigley Field pilgrimage of the season, August 14th and 15th. Finally, I have my annual best friends meet-up in Las Vegas planned for the third week in August. Here’s hoping that the Arizona Supreme Court plays nice with my August vacation schedule — because, well, yeah, I would cancel my vacation plans to argue before the Arizona Supreme Court.
Finally, the Roadrunners released their 2018-19 schedule last week. Schedule contains the same 34 regular season home games, but a few more fall on weekdays (eleven this season, compared to seven last season). Only two immediate conflicts with my existing calendar, but those should be workable. The best news though? I will have my new dream car to enjoy on all those trips to Tucson this fall.
Time to press on and move forward. Time to make a therapist appointment. Time to stay busy to drive away the sorrow, depression, and anxiety.