We made it through the holidays.. It wasn’t pretty a lot of the time.. But really thats not my goal anymore. Its just to make it through.
To celebrate the joys.. and be ok with the sads. To say good riddance to the passing of a year without her and try to not dread the start of year another year without her..
Christmas was just a crap day. One where everything seemed to just go wrong. … From toys breaking.. to meals not cooking right.. Tony even had to go into work. The culmination of the day was the kicker.. I turned the corner from our kitchen to the hallway to be greeted by water.
Charlotte had stuffed too much toilet paper and for 20 mins it kept flushing.. But maybe that was a good thing.. Because we all banded together to clean it up.. and keep little hands from playing in it.
We tried. We never stopped trying and thats the overarching memory I hope the kids took away from the day. Mom and Dad never stopped trying to make it a good day.
Still .. it was one of those days that felt like it was a week long. We were exhausted afterwards. Those days happen in parenthood.. but its hard when those days are the ones that are supposed to be magical.. to be easy. ..
Maybe thats part of the problem. The pressure Tony and I put on ourselves to make it a good day. Because the next day was so much better. The next day was what we hoped Christmas could have been.. I also hope they remember that.. The essence of those few days.
Truth is though its not just us. The kids are have their own struggles this time of year with their sister being gone..
Jonathan. He wants to get together and play with Jennifer’s friends.. with girls around his sisters age. But then he just aches for her afterwards. He wants to make the other girls proud of him… and to get their approval. Then he just misses his sister so much afterwards. He is so aware though.. he knows it. He realzes whats happening.. he grasps his struggle and he chooses to walk through the sadness instead of running from it. Badass
Nicholas. He is always thinking about it. And her. He will just come out randomly and say things he has either decided about heaven or the things he is questioning..My kids earn money to buy each other presents then get a special trip with just me to buy them. On that day he asked me if Santa went to heaven.
I told him, as I always do when it comes to heaven.. I said I wasn’t sure and asked what he thought.. He got very worried and said “Santa has to go to heaven or the kids in heaven won’t get gifts and toys. Mom. He has to go to heaven.” He has his own musings and his own answers.
Charlotte: She has started to worry about her sister. Worry if she is sad. Or cold. The simple things in life that impact her.. she worries they impact her big sister also. It seems to bother her that none of us know for sure.
And she notices now .. she pays attention to people that are part of Unravel and people that remember her sister.
My kids make gifts for all their cousins.. (Now 19 of them!!) and their aunts and uncles.. They tell me a few things they like or appreciate about each person. They are made only by one child to each person but they all like to chime in on suggestions. . .With some of her cousins as the kids were talking about what to say.. she matter of factly mentioned that “they miss Jennifer”. I knew that. But wasn’t sure how she did. “he wears sissy shirts a lot”
Bridgette: I wonder with her.. This sweet tough cookie of mine. The other day she was giggling like a maniac in my arms .. looking at nothing on the wall. She was clutching my Jennifer necklace in her hands.. And I whispered if she was laughing at sissy. She stopped. Looked at me and shook her head emphatically. .. And I wonder.. I just wonder..
Sometimes when I step back and look at it.. Just watch whats happening with all of my surviving kids.. the depths of their hearts.. the questions and the answers they come up with. Its pretty remarkable.
they are pretty remarkable.
but then again..
they have one helluva teacher.
..until there is a cure..