It has been very different this Christmas. My expectations have changed to a place I never thought possible. That has made it OK to forget old traditions, old feelings and old sadnesses.
I forgot totally about the old tradition of making pizza on Christmas eve. When my daughter called me and invited me over, I cried. How could I not have been looking forward to this???!!! How could I have totally obliterated the memory of this long-standing Christmas Eve tradition? I haven’t cried like that in a year.
Then I thought….
…that was probably a good thing – not that I felt so devastated, but that I have moved beyond memories…that I was very happy in my own place, in my own skin, before I was reminded about an old family tradition…
I visited my families this year – yes, my families – plural – there is no more one family now – I have discovered that my three kids are each an entity in themselves and my brothers and sisters are another wonderful group that sits by itself. I am no longer the centre – the provider of the feast, the organizer of “THE FAMILY” – WOW!! – it took me these five years to come to that realization without feeling sorry for myself.
This would have happened anyway – it is not because of Jim’s death – it is because my kids have grown up and I must grow up as well.
I had a great time buying and making things for my family this year.
I had a great time wrapping them and transporting them 6 hours and watching everyone tear into them. We all love each other so much that it hurts – but in a good way.
I live with my lab pup and my three cats and they are my day-to-day life partners now. They don’t complain about anything, they cuddle with me and they love the little gifts I buy them almost every week.
I love my quilting business. It keeps my brain working and it challenges me to use my time and space to the best advantage every day.
I, most of all, love giving my quilts away to friends, neighbours and family. People really appreciate these little works of art and they know that a lot of love is sewn into every stitch.
This is the fifth Christmas since Jim died. He is always there and I have become used to his presence. When I do something stupid, I can hear his cautionary voice and when I do something really wonderful, I can hear him tell me that he is not surprised – he knew I could do it. I guess that 43 years with someone just doesn’t disappear in a mere five years. That’s OK, we’re a good team.