This is the blog I have been dreading writing for months… years actually.
Today marks 1 year without my best friend. 365 days without the laughter, smiles and sarcasm. 8,760 hours of me having to figure it out myself. 525,600 minutes without the support, advice and guidance from the person who always wanted me to succeed and be the best me possible. 31,536,000 seconds without Duane.
Today my family and I went out on MY boat. My pink boat. The boat I bought myself. Scraped and sanded myself. Painted myself. Worked on the trailer myself. Worked on the engine myself. All because Duane taught me how. I was able to make this happen because of the lessons and instruction he provided me for years. I am comfortable backing down a trailer, unhooking a boat, driving a boat and working on a boat because Duane taught me how. On the lake today, as we drank bloody mary’s and fished I realized what a gift Duane had given me. He gave me the gift of knowledge. The gift of confidence.
Duane once told me a story about something his dad said to him – I’m paraphrasing here …. Duane needed his car fixed, didn’t know how to do it, he was going to take it somewhere and pay someone else to fix it. His dad asked him why he would do that. And Duane responded with it’s his job, that’s what he does. And his dad said is that guy smarter than you? If he can do it so can you.
Every time I said “I can’t do it” he got so mad at me. “Yes you can, figure it out!” I could be there crying my eyes out, covered in oil and grease and his response was always the same. As frustrated and mad as I was in those moments, that one lesson has helped me survive this year.
I am thankful today. Thankful for all the “quality” time spent together in the garage, late late at night, in the middle of winter, watching and learning and “helping” rebuild motors. Thankful for all the conversations, life lessons and time spent driving cross country (a large portion of that time spent broken down on the side of the road). Thankful for all the amazing people he brought into my life. Thankful for our time together. Thankful for the love I felt, the patience I learned and the person I have become.
– xoxo Victoria