Sounds of Summer: Affinity

This post is a day late because I was brave and took a step in a new direction last night: I went to a grief support group for young adults who have lost a loved one.

Just typing that feels like a huge exhale.

I knew it was a major leap that my heart and spirit needed. My dad died two years ago as of June 20th, and there are still so many holes in me. But, thanks to the persistence and support of a handful of friends, as well as my mom and my sister, I stuck with that feeling of incompleteness, made a couple of calls, and got myself scheduled for an intake.

And it was the best decision of my post-dad life thus far.

I met six souls who all live on after their family member died. We shared memories, regrets, doubts, and plenty of tears. But we also laughed and locked eyes, showing each other that, yes, we get it — and that we’re in this together.

Today, I’m sharing a song that conveys a more somber and pensive tone, even though it’s an electronic tune with hints of dubstep. It’s called “1995,” and the artist is Affinity.

Songs that fade in gradually do something amazing for me. I love how the pad bumps and reverbs swoop in, while the undercurrent of distant delayed beats and chirpy electronic notes make up the heart of this song. It’s lush, ethereal, and reminds me so much of the long walks at dusk that I would take during past summers — and this summer, too.

This weekend, I’m racing Ironman Buffalo Springs 70.3 for the second year in a row. I told my friend Landon, “This past weekend was the emotional equivalent of suffering through 70.3 miles. This weekend, I get to do that physically.” We shared a smile. How much I cherish small smiles between loved ones now.

I hope to race in honor of my dad and myself, just like I did last year. As a writer, triathlete, counselor, and Acro Yogi, I sometimes think I wear too many hats. That’s B.S.; all of my passions fuel my healing and have helped me become the wonderful, compassionate, and determined man that I am today.

May all of you find some extra light today and continue to be able to pursue all your dreams and passions.

Ride, write, and fly on.

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