Jon had his own blog on this website, dedicated to his studies as an aspiring IE and the direction that it would take him. In the last year, he was focused on bettering himself, in order to better provide for his family. In order to better provide for us.

Sometimes, I like to read the words he wrote, and remember his voice, as though he was speaking them. I check his blog somewhat regularly, as there are random comments on the last post of his blog. He was quickly networking through the IT world, and slowly and steadily making a name for himself. Sometimes he was intimidated by the vast amount of information he had to know before he could consider himself an “expert”, but he was also growing quickly in his studies, and was becoming more and more focused to reach his goals.

It bothered him how much time it took for him to study sometimes. Sometimes, it bothered me too. But I never let him know it. I supported him and encouraged him to finish school, and to finish his certs. They were important to what he wanted to be, and the man he wanted to become. And as he became more serious, he also became a better parent and a better husband. The silly things of life that he let bother him seemed to slip away, and while he spent a significant amount of time studying, he also contributed a lot of time to his family and spending time together. If I wanted or needed his attention, it was there for the taking. And the same is true for our daughters.

I chose a wordpress blog, because my livejournal is so broad, (and has covered so many areas of my life), that I didn’t want to pour out my grief there. I’ve had it for so long, and this is only something I am recently dealing with. I wanted something to record my journey through this period of my life, as I still live it. I wanted something dedicated to his memory, and the life I will begin to lead, now that he is not here anymore.

Jon was an avid reader of other blogs, especially those that were dedicated study blogs towards his vocation. He was inspired by those who had either passed their written or had passed both the written and lab, for their IE, and couldn’t wait until he got his number. One such blog was CCIE Pursuit, which he talked to me about, regularly. Jon would read about this person’s experiences, personal as well as professional, and we would talk about what it would take to dedicate that much time to his education and goals. He wanted a balanced family, and was striving to keep that balance, and still meet his professional potential.

Today, I came across this:

Jon would have been humbled to be mentioned, although I’m sure he would have rather have been mentioned as a recipient of a new number. Sometimes, the idea that he will never get that number is incredibly painful for me to think about. All that hard work and dedication, and he didn’t even make it to his commencement ceremony.  It seems incredibly unfair.

I missed this, in May, but it says a lot about Jon’s actual mindset in the months before his death:

Jon was a dedicated family man, and held education very high on his list of priorities. He wanted nothing more than to provide for his family, in a way that would benefit us for years and years into the future. He left a legacy that included definitive goals for his children, and they will pursue secondary education because of it.

If there was anything he believed, it was that knowledge itself was not power. Applied knowledge was power. Jon was definitely an expert at applying his knowledge and beliefs. And it is up to me to see that his children do the same.