There are people that dread the number 13, it’s an actual condition called triskaidekaphobia. I’m not afraid of numbers per se, and although having to do math causes some anxiety for me, I wouldn’t call it a phobia. 2013 was particularly distressing for triskaidekaphobics, and in some ways I can see their point, at least where this year is concerned. It’s been a year marked by tragic loss, unknown futures, and the reality of Derek’s disease smacking us all in the face. But if I considered this year, a ‘bad year,’ I would be ignoring all the good things that happened. Here’s an abbreviated list of highlights from 2013 that goes along with the video embedded above:
- Derek grew a mighty impressive mustache for Movember and decided to keep it for a while. He converted to a safety razor to clean his face of hair, and even bought mustache wax from a beauty supply store. Truly, a lifelong dream fulfilled.
- We got a weather station, and for a while (the batteries keep dying) we had the technology to track our weather as it happened.
- A massive blizzard hit the northeast early in the year, and lucky for us we had a fully operational snow blower! The neighborhood was still and silent as we ventured out, late in the day, to survey the drifts.
- The mustache came off after Derek became unnerved by his ‘stache floating peacefully in his water bottle as he drank.
- Derek’s parents bought a lovely new house within walking distance of Lake Winnipesaukee. It includes a tiny pantry in the kitchen that has surprising depth and is a fun place to hide.
- We went to a fundraiser gala at Derek’s high school and I got to buy orange patent leather shoes that nearly ate my feet alive. But I felt pretty, oh so pretty, if only for a while.
- We went bowling with friends.
- Derek practiced lounging in the backyard on our new lounge chairs.
- We celebrated our 3 year wedding anniversary with an obscenely tall ombre cake slathered in homemade buttercream frosting.
- We went to Funspot for their 15th annual International Classic Video Game Tournament and made some radio.
- The Bear Island cottage was our summer hang out and included Derek assisting his grandpa with the dock repairs.
- Derek’s cousin got engaged and we celebrated with their friends and family on the Seacoast.
- The amazing life of Derek’s grandma was celebrated in a lovely ceremony in Meredith, which gave Derek and his brother a chance to reenact imaginary fights from their childhood.
- We went on a week long camping trip to Acadia National Park to celebrate both of our birthdays. The trip included bike rides, scenic vistas, a spectacularly foggy day, delicious lobster rolls, and satisfying hikes.
- I marveled for the millionth time how beautiful the sky can be if I just look outside our front door.
- We hiked Welch-Dickey for the third time as a couple and ‘old baldy’ let me live to see another day.
- Derek gave out free high fives at Manchester’s 5k road race to thousands of grateful runners.
- He also took a spin on the waterski with his mother and aunt at the helm.
- Music filled the island as Derek dusted off the keyboard at the lake and took up the banjo his grandpa bought years ago.
- We regained the title ‘Cyclocross Superfans’ as we joined our favorite CX’er, first at Gloucester and then at Providence.
- We saw Brown University through the eyes of Derek, which included a secret bathroom, a visit to his commemorative brick and a tour of his (
fraternity) coed literary society.
- A trip to Oakland included meeting our niece for the first time and Derek’s attempts to balance things on her head.
- We decorated the tree out front and added another set of lights, moving that much closer to Derek’s dream of a fully lit Japanese Maple.
- The most adorable Christmas tree on the lot was rescued by us and decorated with care, in hopes that St. Nicholas would bring us a new liver.
The year has been challenging, but we are forever reminded of the unflinching support and love of our friends and family. Here’s hoping for a winter filled with hot cocoa on cold days; heavy blankets at night; a big bowl of homemade soup and snow that never looks muddy and gross.