Today is the 11th anniversary of my husband's passing. And while I've spent some of the last week engaging a little bit in the angry cry (and always at the WORST possible time), today I've actually been thinking more about what has changed in 11 years.
Yes, there's the obvious answer - the kids. As I go to workshop after workshop about college funding and wondering how I got into this mess of doing it all myself, the passage of time is staring me directly in the face (and taunting me).
But lately I've been thinking about the actual things that have changed in 11 years and that makes me sad, too, because I keep envisioning how Brad would have embraced (or shunned) them. And here's what I've come up with.
1. The Smart Phone
Oh, how he would have loved it. He died using a flip phone and just before texting was really a big deal - fate is truly cruel. Considering how much he HATED talking on the phone, non-verbal communication would have been his dream come true. And what about the endless apps he would have downloaded??? This would have helped any communication issues we might have because he'd probably be too occupied to communicate.
2. Anything at Best Buy
But mainly TVs. We had one of the HUGE 60" box TVs when he died which I immediately got rid of in favor of a flat screen (although my first one was embarrassingly small). I have a feeling right now we'd have one of those curved 3D 205" TVs with a sound system that would blast you through the back wall. And we would be taking advantage of a lot of 0% financing.
Now, this one I don't know if he would have liked as much. Since he loved working on cars and cars these days really can't be worked on, I'm not sure he would have liked it. But I'm sure he would have LOVED all of the gadgets we have now. Sirius XM radio, touch screens, USB outlets for every seat...
...of course what would really piss him off is that I still like driving a minivan.
4. Top Golf.
The kids and I went to Top Golf today. It's funny how when we celebrate "Daddy Days" that's where they want to go because Brad was a fairly horrible golfer. However, he would have loved the whole thing and the technology behind it. So, in a weird way it's entirely appropriate that we remember him there...even though he's never been.
Lots of change. Enough said.
6. Video Games
Every once in a while, I let my son buy a video game at just random times. He is very sweet and says it's not necessary to which I always reply, "Your sisters have bought at least $60 worth of hair products in the last couple of months. And if your dad were here you'd have a LOT more video games than you do now. Go for it."
I bought a king-sized Temperpedic a few years ago which weren't around in 2007 (I don't think). I truly think that that would have saved us a lot of marital stress if we'd had one when he was still with us. He used to tell me that I was like Sid the Sloth in Ice Age when I tried to go to sleep - I flop around for about 2 hours until I get comfortable. A mattress that doesn't bounce would have been his dream come true.
Considering how much he ignored me as he played computer solitaire, I would have been completely on my own had he ever discovered Angry Birds.
No more pesky arguments about who the designated driver will be!
I don't have one, but I'm betting if Brad were here, that would have been my Christmas gift years ago. And it probably would have been modified for flight or something.
11. Netflix and Bingewatching
There are MANY shows on TV that I don't watch because I'm squeamish and can't imagine watching them alone. AND I live with three teenagers, so my TV is usually tuned into an episode of Riverdale or one of the Twilight, Divergent, or Hunger Games series. If their father were here, there'd be a lot more Game of Thrones and a lot less ridiculous drama.
12. GPS Systems
This ties into the phone thing, but we actually had a SEPARATE HAND-HELD GPS SYSTEM for when we went camping. That's right. None of this Google Maps business or car navigation. We were old school. And often fought because I can't read a map.
13. Anything space related
Without my rocket scientist here, I'm completely out of the loop. But I did get teary with the final farewell to the Cassini project - a program he worked on at Cape Canaveral when we were first married. Bet he would have liked to have seen that.
I think it's safe to say that Prime would have ruined my marriage.
For such a manly man, my husband liked really frou-frou coffee. The fact that he could have chosen from 5,000 flavors would have been awesome for him. However, he was also incredibly frugal in some ways...so he might have resisted it.