Sunday, December 12, 2010


Let's just get right to it. Christmas is going to break my heart this year. There's no way around it.

I cannot call it off. I have little ones who are eager in anticipation of a Christmas tree, yummy treats, opening gifts, and 2 weeks off from school. I think I have worn out the 'my house is being worked on' excuse of not getting into to Christmas spirit yet. I can get a Christmas tree. I can get the boxes out of the garage. But I am stalling. I don't want to do this. Not ANY.LITLLE.STINKING part of this.

I just don't want to do Christmas without James. My mom died in October 2006, and since the Christmas following her death, James was my rock to get me through this season... both Christmas and my birthday. He was REALLY good at running interference for me. I miss that. I miss that protection. I miss having someone by my side who knew what I couldn't say.

Nat came home from school on Friday in tears. She said some friends were talking about their dads, and she's glad for them, but it just made her miss her daddy, and she she couldn't help but start crying. She said she wanted to tell them she was just sad (sad for herself, NOT mad at them for talking about their daddies), but she couldn't get the words out. And then said she thought better of it. She didn't want to tell them, 'cause she didn't want anyone to ever feel as sad as she does.

And so... we talk about daddy and missing him. And we both cry. I tell her that I know how she feels. Some friends will want to know ALL the good AND the bad AND the sad too. Those friends will reveal themselves to you, and when they do, they are friends for life, no matter the distance or time. And they will come. They will come when you need them. They will call when they know you need it, even if you didn't know you needed it yourself. You'll know it the second you hear their voice. They will come in spirit. They will come in love, in any capacity.

I talk boldly to my children. And pray that the hope and strength I try to live by and show them, will be enough to pull me through too...

What in the world am I supposed to do with James' Christmas stocking this year? I realize to everyone else, that small detail may seem ...well... minor. But it's not. Not to me. Do I hang it or not? If I hang it, what do I do with it come Christmas morning? Just let it sit empty? That may actually be too much for me to handle. Do I bring his stocking to his grave? Do I leave it there? WHAT the heck do I do with it? I have lots of scenarios, and NONE of them seem right.

But then... NOTHING seems right, no matter what I do.

And I suppose, that's what I just need to accept. There is no graceful way to get through Christmas when I don't want anything to do with it to start with. There's also no way to get through the next few weeks without feeling the pain. I wish there was a way to just skip this part. I'm tired a lot. Or so I thought. But really... I think I just need time to escape. I need to NOT feel.

I will get a tree.
I will get the boxes from the garage.
I will decorate.
I will put on a happy face at any glimmer of peace.

Then I will bow my head. I will do this. I can get through this.

Until then I will come up for air only long enough to ask God if this is over yet.


Mary Thomas said...

It's not right. Whatever way you get through it, the season will pass. Hopefully it will leave some peace behind when it goes. I feel completely lame suggesting ANYTHING, cause obviously nothing will 'fix' this...but wherever it is, what if you filled James' stocking with notes to him? Good words, hard words, loving, or missing words...or just pictures...a cookie. Whatever. You could keep them inside and add to them every year. Or burn them in the Christmas fire and start over next year. I suggest not keeping the cookie in there, however.

allison said...

I love you.

And the girls are SO lucky to have a BRAVE, bold mama like you... they are learning through your example what this season really is about: not commercialism or presents, but spending time with those you love, remembering those we lost and giving thanks for all the many blessings we have. I dont see anything wrong with "doing what you can" to get through this season...from my view you're focusing on the right stuff ;)

I really like Mary's comment about the stocking... I also was going to suggest maybe incorporating the stocking into something else that you can keep for years and cherish when you bring it out around christmas time, ie: blanket or tree skirt, etc.

Brittany said...

Ditto what Allison said. I think the stocking idea that Mary has is excellent.

Love you.

Lauren said...


Jennifer said...

Whatever you have to do to make it through each day is perfectly ok. I love Mary's idea too. You always say you hate being called strong, but you are. It's getting up each day, and doing what has to be done, because it has to be done even when you're at your weakest. That makes you strong. As always, I'm thinking of you and loving you and those precious girls of yours.