I watched three high school hockey games this month.
My friend Adam's son, Aries, was the starting goalie for the LaSalle Explorers in all three games.
I've known Aries his whole life. Since long before his life seemed possible. Adam and I became friends at 14. We were 4 years younger than Aries is now.
I know how hard Aries has worked to get to this point. I know because of how many miles Adam has driven him. How many camps Aries has attended. How many practices and games Adam attends.
I wouldn't call any of it a sacrifice. Not the time or money. Aries has loved just about all of it, and he's a great kid. He's kind, appreciative, and he loves hockey. In many ways, it was the opposite of a sacrifice, for Aries and Adam. I know because Aries lights up when he talks about hockey. And Adam lights up when he talks about Aries. Back in the day, when Adam and I would hang out, we'd talk about all kinds of things. We'd shit talk and crack each other up. We'd support each other through tough times. Now we mostly talk about Aries and Aries's younger brother, River.
Adam can't keep.his eyes dry when he talks about his boys. Neither can I. Being with them isn't a sacrifice for him, not for Adam or his wife, Kirsten.
If there's any sacrifice, it's in fighting the desire to protect them. The toll it takes. Watching Aries face frozen pucks fired by some of the best teenaged hockey players in the state.
Each shot, each face off, tightened my lungs. I wanted to throw myself in front of him. I wanted Aries to be safe. To remain a kind, appreciative, charmed boy in love with a game. I wanted the game to love him back. For the spectators to love him no matter where the pucks landed.
There’s a succinct, less dramatic way to make this point. This month we moved from Ohio back to New Jersey and into a new home. I started a great new job as executive director of the New Jersey Library Association. I once again live close to my family and people I’ve loved for decades. As much as I’ve experienced this month, what I want to share with you is a boy playing ice hockey.
I can only imagine how this month has felt for Adam.
Welcome to March 2023’s Disappearing Moment, an inventory of my experiences. I hope you enjoy it.
I needed a scale drawing of my bathroom to test a remodeling idea. Excalidraw made this sketch (or any chart) painless and fun.
Proraso Classic shaving cream. Cruelty free and vegan. Made in Italy. Works a charm. Menthol. Eucalyptus. To. Die. For.
Get comfortable painting rooms. Or develop other skills that are fun for you, give you a sense of satisfaction, and save you money.
Thanks for spending a few moments with me. I look forward to corresponding again next month.