This year I haven’t listened to any Christmas songs.
Haven’t drank any snowballs or dug around the bottom of a metal tin for foil-wrapped chocolate. I didn’t dress a big green tree or walk around the neighbourhood taking in the twinkling lights. I haven’t worn a cosy Christmas jumper and I certainly didn’t attend Winter Wonderland or any wreath-making classes. I bought some last minute presents and I’ve put off the task of wrapping them up in favour of spewing my feelings out and in to my blog.
Every time I think about the big day and all the things associated with it, it just really hurts. I don’t want to be a Grinch – I used to love Christmas so much – it was the one time of the year I felt my family came together really well – Christmas felt very much like “our” thing and believe me, I loved having a thing.
Now I’m not sure what it is, and I don’t know what I’m supposed to do with it – just the thought of it makes panic arise within me.
Christmas eve won’t be spent in my beautiful home – with my beloved quails pecking the baubles on the tree and my aviary birds getting extra Christmassy seed bell treats. No cute little Nibbles the hedgehog snuggled up in his special Christmas fleece. No pretty decorations. When Christmas day arrives I’ll have to spend it without my Dad and without my two gorgeous doggies that joined him this year. I can’t imagine a Christmas day without my Dad, and I don’t want to.
But yet, despite all that the day will still come and I will have to get through it. I wish I could make myself feel something more than sadness and loss but I understand that it takes time, and I know I can’t force myself to feel something I don’t.
It really does go to show you – Christmas isn’t about the food you eat or the gifts you open. It’s not about grand gestures. Without your loved ones, there really is no Christmas. So if you’re lucky enough to have those that you love by your side this year – please give them a big squeeze and tell them how much you love them and how thankful you are that you get to spend the big day with them. You never really know when there will be someone missing from the dinner table.