It is that time of year we, (usually the female persuasion, sorry guys but I know the majority of my guys leave it up to the gals) try to put way to much on our calendars. This party, that party, shopping here, shopping there, bake these cookies, finish up these handmades, decorate!!!! You get the point, our calendars are so filled with STUFF that we have little to no time to enjoy any of it. Guys again you don't count, you wouldn't enjoy half of that if you DID have the time.
So here you are, running around like a chicken who is on the menu for Sunday dinner, and what do you get out of it? Tired, run down, exhausted, stressed! What an excellent gift to receive!! Not. What is worse, we are giving it to each other with little to no concern! That just don't sounds very Christmasy to me.
As if that insanity is not enough, lets throw in a dash of grief and depression, you know to mix things up a bit. (adding you guys back in now) Many of us have a layer of sadness during the holidays, we miss a mother who enjoyed Christmas, we miss a sibling that used to share in the joy of Santa with us, we miss a friend, a husband, there is a moment in the hustle and bustle that a tear wells in your eye and a breath catches in your throat as you wish just for a moment they were there, then most move on with a smile of remembrance. As parents of children who are spending their holiday season in Heaven it isn't a moment, usually that tear wells the week before Thanksgiving and slowly slides down our cheeks until some time in mid January. There isn't a moment that is not clouded by a sadness that only we could understand, even in the happy moments the longing of spending just one more Christmas morning with our child. From seeing their bright face as they rush in to see what Santa has delivered, to hearing their cheery voices sing Christmas songs of days gone by, the memories flood our hearts. For myself, this will be the 9th and 6th Christmas without Little Dustin and Deanna, it is a time frame in which some believe I should have moved on, that there should be more happiness than sadness, this is just not the case.
I don't know if a time comes where we as Angel Parents can say with all certainty that we have more happy in us than sadness, I can only speak for myself and right now I can tell you that the smile you see the majority of the time is a plastered falseness that is only there to get me through that moment in time so that someone else does not feel awkward. Here I stand with emotions the size of mountains in me and yet my first instinct is to fake it for you, because in this lot there just is no fake it until you make it. In the last year alone I have been called psychotic, selfish, deplorable, just to name a few and those were just in the few moments that I stood up for myself, can you imagine what the words would be if I didn't wear the mask to face the masses?
I saw a Facebook meme the other day, it had this beautiful woman looking into a mirror with this creature looking back at her, the quote was imagine if mirrors showed your character. I thought then what would mine look like. I didn't think it would look beautiful, not because I am a bad person, but because I no longer feel like a person. I imagined it to be the reflection of a gigantic heart with a fantastic dark hole right in the center. My heart is huge and as if the grief of my own isn't enough I take on the pain and problems of anyone near me. You may be thinking what a beautiful image to have of of ones self, possibly, but the heart is tired, what is visible is worn out, and there are hands grabbing at it, and some punching it and those are in the way of the people trying so desperately to hug it. Usher in Christmas and there stands the Grinch mocking my heart, look at all the pain, look at all you have lost, look at those you couldn't help, or save, look at those that hate you, look at your failures, look at the past, look at the fact that you could not save your own children....
Let that sink in.
That no matter how big my heart was, I couldn't save him... I couldn't save her.. These are my burdens to bear, and I don't think that any amount of time will heal or fill that hole.
My point... to all of you.. YES ALL OF YOU, regardless of your source of sadness, it could be your first of 100th Christmas with out your mother, or you maybe facing your child's addiction, you may quietly watching the love of your life self destruct unable to find a way to help them, your friend maybe in trouble and you can't find the right words.... it is ok to just not be ok. If you find yourself overwhelmed, stressed, sad, grieving, please know you are not alone. There is someone out there who understands that the pressures we put on our selves are overwhelming and at times unbearable. Let someone you love know how your heart feels, that you just need a moment to gather yourself and your feels, even if that moment stretches into a day, a week...
Take care of you, before the hole is your whole.
Peace and Love