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There are times that I really do feel like The Little Old Woman Who Lived in the Shoe. I even call our little house "The Shoe". I am a stay at home mom. I do really think that was my calling. My kids are 13, 10, 10, (yes they are twins) and 5. Our life is an adventure, most times it really is a beautiful adventure.

Wednesday, 28 November 2012

Our Bi-Polar Christmas


   

  We are quickly approaching a very bipolar season for Christopher and I.  I say bipolar because it is such a conflicted season... full of extreme highs and extreme loses.  For me the Christmas season is a magical time.  Christmas brings out the best in people I think.  It is the time of year that you feel grateful for what you have, and want to reach out to those who are in need.  It does not matter who you believe in or what religion you subscribe to (if any) chances are you celebrate a major holiday in December.  That to me says that this is a special time of year, a spiritual time.  I still feel that tug, that tug that goes against everything that I believe as an adult, at this time of year I believe that magic could really happen, that miracles could really exist.  I feel different in my very soul at this time of year.
    The other side of this is a heavy suffocating depression that makes it's way every single December.  I try to put things into place for the month of December in November, because I know that beginning December 1 until mid- February, I will be suffocated with grief, and depression.  Each day after December first feels like another rung down into the abyss of disspair.  We lost Gabriel December 24 of 2004.  I kept thinking that there would be a Christmas miracle that would rescue my baby, but that miracle did not come.  Christmas means that I have an ache that cannot be cured.  Every holiday decoration is like rubbing salt in my open wound.  How can I celebrate when I have no oldest child to celebrate with us.  For the first few years anytime I smiled I felt guilty that I could smile and my poor little boy could not.
    Here is the balancing game for us.  We have four little kids, who want their Christmas.  They don't understand that Christmas is hard for Mommy and Daddy, and let's be honest, they don't care.  They want Christmas.  I know that I sound like a broken record, but I feel like my job as a mother is to ensure that my children grow up as healthy and as well adjusted as I can make them.  None of us are perfect, but I try to make the intent, to do the best that I can do by them.  I am not always successful in this, but I try.  I am honest with them and tell them that Christmas is a sad time of year for Daddy and I because we miss Gabe. I want them to remember Gabe, even if they do not have their own memories of him.  I want them to know their real brother, that means I tell them about the things that he did that drove me crazy.  I tell them about the things that he did that made me proud of him.  I want them to know their brother, but I do not want to make him into this larger than life martyr, and I certainly do not want them to resent him.  They would reset Gabe if we did not celebrate Christmas because it was too hard for their father and I.  I try to make Christmas magical, and I do some of my best acting.  Sometimes the funniest thing happens....  I forget that I am "acting", and get lost in the magic.
    I get through the season by planning.  I plan and I plan and I plan.  If it's on paper and widely known then even if I don't feel like getting out of bed and facing the day, I have to.  If I make a promise to my kids I always make good on the promise.  Through the month I will share our holiday plans, and hopefully I will have the picture thing resolved soon.

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