Christmas 1994

Family and Friends,                                                      

This has been an eventful year!  Domenic, our son, is now 22 months old and quite a handful.  A lot of people used to think I was loud -- well he is even louder. His voice just seems to carry.  I enjoy watching him and the changes he is going through -- every day is a new surprise. When I hold him in my arms I understand the joy my father must have felt at having me as his son after so many years of waiting.

He has a basket full of stuffed animals which he pretty much ignored until just a few weeks ago. Then he started using their names and wanting them to share in his daily adventures. He has “bear” (a bear), “raaaacoon” (a raccoon), “puffy one and puffy two” (a four legged horse like thing - two of them), “bunny” (a rabbit), “oscaa” (an otter), and “ruuudy” (a reindeer).  When we leave his bedroom he needs mommy or daddy to pick up each of them and carry them with him, and if we forget one we have to go back and get it.  He’s a good eater (loves pasta) and a great sleeper (down at around 8:30 and up at around 8:00). We have only had to get up at night with him a handful of times.  In a year in which there has been some rough going he has truly been a blessing and a joy -- I could have a dozen!

It's been a difficult year for us (I think one for the record books!).  Adrienne has wanted us to separate/divorce for about a year now. I have not wanted to go along with this although I expect I may find myself facing a divorce proceeding in the New Year.  It is still hard for me to believe that a relationship which was filled with so much love could become so cold. I hate to bring this up at Holiday time, but the people getting this letter are my close family and friends. I always like to be honest and upfront about things and I wanted to let you know what was going on!

It was also an eventful year at work. I was working on a defense contract here in the local area and suspected that fraudulent test data was being submitted to the government.  I made the decision to “blow the whistle” and was fired in August with no warning/no benefits.  I was very lucky to find a part time consulting job within about a month.  I am looking for a law firm to represent me, but these things take time.  It actually turned out to be a good thing. I work mornings till about noon, and Adrienne has a job teaching Japanese at two local colleges.  We had been looking for day care for Domenic, but now with Daddy at home in the afternoon things are fine. It also gives me a chance to spend some time with Domenic.

I am trying to keep a positive outlook on things.  I still feel pretty lucky (especially to have a child). All the bad news from Bosnia and Rwanda made me very conscious of the suffering so many families are going through.  Adrienne and I really have been very fortunate. I pray to understand what is happening to us and trust in God that things will work out for the best. I would like to stay together as a family. This will certainly be a bitter-sweet Christmas.

 With Love & Merry Christmas!

© John and Domenic Murtari 2011