Gifts in the Gap

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I think we often have post holiday blues because seasons of gratitude, hope & love were never intended to be seasons.

I shared this thought for the first time a number of years ago and read it again today. I’ve experienced more frequent waves of sadness (both pre and post Christmas) this year than I usually experience. Twice on Christmas Day and once yesterday the thought “I need to call and see how my dad is” crossed my mind.  It’s been over three months since his passing and, yet, this new normal is a hard one for my mind to fully adjust to. Calling my dad’s care giver several times a week was just part of my routine for the last four years.

On Sunday, I texted my two brothers to wish them a Merry Christmas and then found myself in a bit of a funk because that was the extent of reconnecting with family. I had quickly exhausted my “Must Touch Base With My Family” list. Don’t get me wrong.  I’m not complaining.  I love my family. It’s just that my already small family has, once again, shrunk…and that makes me a little sad.  On Christmas Day, I was stuck in the middle of a conundrum. I still wanted to reconnect with family but was out of family to connect with. So, I did the next best thing. I texted my dad’s former caregiver. 🙂

Me:  Twice today I’ve thought about picking up the phone and calling my dad. Hard habit get out of ): Hope you and your family have had a nice Christmas.

Frances: Awwww thank you, we did have a good Christmas but you can always call us, we will be here for you whenever you need to talk. Merry Christmas to you and your family.

Me: Thank you! I really appreciate that. Just weird getting used to a new normal…

However, one of the positive things about a small family? I’ve had to lean on good friends. Once again, I find myself incredibly thankful for the friends in my life who are more like sisters, brothers, cousins and crazy aunts and uncles. There have been times when I could not have made it without them in my life… standing with me in the dark gap, arms stretched out and reassuring words:  “We’re here for you. We’ll hold you up, Eileen. We’ve got your back.”

I’m reminiscing and crying tears of joy now.

“I think we often have post holiday blues because seasons of gratitude, hope & love were never intended to be seasons.”

What beautiful, precious gifts these loved ones are.

I’m grateful….every day…every season.  

Thank you family and friends!

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