Jun 24th, 2005 Posted in Free Form | Comments Off

As Cailean’s 19th birthday came and went this week, the effects of his absence were enormous. The tragedy of his disease and consequent death is found everywhere we go and in everything we do. I have always enjoyed observing children just to watch the endlessly wonderful or wacky or wonderfully wacky things they do as a matter of course. Now, my observations have a secondary function because there is always the possibility that I will see a kid who looks like Cailean or who does or says something that he did previously such as blowing a drink straw wrapper at my nose whenever we went to a restaurant.
The disappearance and subsequent rescue this week of the eleven year old boy named Brennan Hawkins in Utah this week were extremely touching and important to me because Brennan’s looks and smile and lack of hard edges were very reminiscent of Cailean.
During Cailean’s last months, he spent many days and hours at Outward Bound’s national headquarters and its nature preserve which adjoin the Hudson River. Often he would take his guitar or just explore or hang out. We would often worry if he was ok but were reconciled to the fact that a 17 old boy that is too ill to go to school or be with his friends must be allowed to do something in return. An entry in one of Cailean’s journals suggests that he had met a girl who was probably staying at the preserve as a summer intern which would make her his last frienship. Each night on the way home from work my train rides past these woods and rocks and waterlands. Every time I look out the window hoping to spot him, hoping beyond all belief that he will see me and wave and then smile as only he could do. I will keep looking out that window for a long time.
It is a small but still wonderful consolation that Brennan Hawkins smile and persona will serve as a partial testiment to Cailean’s lasting memory. Happy 19th birthday Buddy- love Dad.

19th Birthday…

Jun 20th, 2005 Posted in Free Form | Comments Off

Today’s Cailean’s 19th birthday. Dexter is really into birthdays lately. He talks about his 3rd one coming up and he loves to sing the birthday song to anyone. I can just imagine the smile on Cailean’s face if he heard Dex sing to him today, he would have loved it.

Dex is pretty young and only got to know Cailean for too short of a time, but he remembers him like he saw and played with him yesterday. He’ll see his picture and say, ” I love KK. I dunno where he is Mom. Maybe we gonna have to find him sometime. ”

Happy Birthday K, we’re always thinking about you…