This is a message for those of you who may be struggling at Christmas with broken hearts and lives. When we see happy, carefree people all around it can make us feel even more isolated. It is like being in a fish bowl looking out and feeling like we will never be able to live like that.
I have met up with a few people lately who are in the early stages of grief and they have the look of someone in shock. I always think it is harder for the ones who are left behind, whether through a broken relationship or death of a loved one, to pick up our lives and try to find a way through the terrible all-consuming pain.
I remember the first few Christmas’s without Scott. I just ached all over, my heart hurt, my body hurt and it was very hard to function. At the time I thought I would never do Christmas again. But we can do some things that help us move forward. It will get better, dear reader. We have to find a new life without that person in it and it does take time.
Edith Eger, in The Choice writes, “Time doesn’t heal, it’s what you do with the time.”
As each Christmas goes by I find I have a new joy in using my time to make Christmas special for our family. I wanted more than anything to be able to show them the magic and wonder of Christmas. Scott is still part of our family. Just because he isn’t here doesn’t mean he is gone from our hearts. We keep his memory alive by talking about him. We watch a Scott movie and remember his sense of humour. Sometimes I think it has been too long since I last saw him. We put a swing label on our Christmas tree and have his name on it as well as a named label for our other very special people who have died.
We like to light a candle in memory of Scott. A candle that signifies light and hope.
Being around others who understand and love us is so important. To be able to talk if we feel like it, or not. It is like being wrapped in a warm blanket. The little kindness of others is like God touching our souls. Love heals. We cannot walk this journey alone. As time has gone by, my focus has moved from myself and my pain to being able to reach out to others in theirs. I know what it feels like to hurt.
There is a ‘Blue’ service of remembrance and hope at St Johns Anglican Church in Feilding on Saturday 16th December at 5 pm. It is a quiet, peaceful service for those who are hurting, grieving or who struggle with finding joy at Christmas.
I am sending my love to those of you who may be hurting at Christmas. Please know there are others who understand and care.