Saturday, 20 February 2016

Going back


We are going back to the last place we ever thought we'd want to.

How we got here seems driven by fate, and perhaps by Dominic too.

We always said he brought us to the happiest place in the world as his last trip with us. But the fear was that time in Florida nearly six months ago would leave the memory as forever haunted, desolate and dark.

Orlando. It's where we went to be happy. It's where he died instead.

Now there's a chance to create some new memories there, finish the trip that ended with him cremated and in an urn beside us on the plane ride home.

The weather will be perfect. New friends and some old ones. Family. A chance to earn some money for the Alberta Children's Hospital and heal a bit, too.

When Perry Esler of Children's Miracle Network contacted us about doing something special, the answer was an obvious yes but laced with doubt. I suppose it still is. They wanted to honour Dom and us by doing a video and bringing us to Orlando for the Extra Life United charity gaming event. It's a sort of competition, where I'll play games to try and win part of a $150,000 prize pool for our local hospital, but also in the middle of CMN's Momentum convention where champion children from hospitals all across North America come.

A team led by producer Don Fyffe flew in from Salt Lake City in December to interview us and see Dominic's home. Don asked me for some extra content to finish the project a week ago - I sent him hundreds of photos and videos. I think he got what he needed.

So here we are, laid over in Toronto waiting to board the flight to Orlando. The emotion is a mix of anxiety and excitement - thus the stiff drink in my hand and the glass of wine in Trish's.

There will be tough moments and amazing ones. And Dom will guide us through all of it.

Extra Life United doesn't start until Tuesday. Tomorrow, we get to do something we had planned to do the day he crashed.

It'll be magical and heartbreaking and exhilarating and depressing all at the same time.

It'll be perfect.

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