A Response to Prompt 18: Your feelings this holiday season....
There are so many shifts this year.
A beloved, freshly married sister living in England.
A beloved, freshly divorced sister-in-law staying in Boston.
A (different) brother-in-law's new girlfriend visiting, who is missing her own children.
Amidst the mistletoe and carols, I can only feel more changes on their way. I have this lurking feeling I can't shake about being lucky on the death-front. So far.
As a kid, all I longed for was a Pound Puppy or nameplate necklace which I usually found, lovingly wrapped in my hand-sewn stocking.
As I grew older, encircled by parents, sisters and our stacks of lovingly wrapped gifts, I sat next to my twinkling Christmas tree, just wanting a boyfriend.
A few years later, we met. But, he lived 2,000 miles away. I would call him a half dozen times on Christmas Day, pining for him, practically ignoring all the local love.
This year it was like I heard Elvis's "Blue Christmas" for the first time. "I'll be so blue, thinking about you . . ." I'll miss my sister, sister-in-law, feel for our new guest who misses her family. I think about never waking up in my parent's home on Christmas again, even though they only live 8 hours away.
While losses and transitions abound, I can't help but hum the deep blues.
Yet, I'm also wow-ed by the season's shimmery silvers, bright greens, shiny golds and captivating crimsons. I'm appreciating the conversations, gestures, traditions, surprises that pass quickly and eventually lead to the major changes.
This year, I led a Christmas gift making activity with my son's kindergarten class. I cried afterwards. It was one of the best mornings of my life. Seeing the precious children's delight at stringing emerald and garnet beads to make candy cane ornaments for their families was so touching. They even stopped me in the hallway after to say, "That was awesome! Thank you!"
Becoming a "grown-up" must mean always having some blues on the background. I'll be the one to choose whether to dance or sit it out. This Christmas morning, I'll hold my losses close, but boogy in that special-at-home-only way to "Jingle Bell Rock" while my two little boys let the wrapping paper fly.