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It’s That Time of Year…

Monday, December 5, 2016
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It’s That Time of Year…
November and December are usually months filled with family, food, love, joy and reflection; but they have become painful months for me. November was my late husband’s birthday, 10 days later he passed, and then came Thanksgiving, Christmas, then and the birth of our twins in February. 
The first holidays without him were just a blur; I tried to get through each day and avoided as much celebration as possible. I was still numb, focused on delivering two healthy children, trying to put my grief aside for their sake. 
The second holidays without him were very lonely. Christmas was his favorite holiday, and he was always more excited about decorating than I ever was. One of his favorite things was a decorated tree lit up next to a roaring fire in the fireplace. Every commercial on TV, every movie, was like salt on the wound. How could I watch happy couples or families reveling in the joy of the holidays when that had all been ripped away from me? I was still very angry that he had died and couldn’t wait for Christmas to just be over.
The third holidays without him are here. He has been gone for two years, and life is slowly moving on.  I’m in a new relationship, started a new business, and I can feel my broken heart ever so slowly forming the deep scar that will forever remain. But the holidays haven’t changed much for me yet. I’m still not excited to decorate, and it feels like the joy of the season was sucked out by a vacuum. 
The holidays for those of us who have lost someone are always going to be hard. But will I ever feel that holiday joy again? Happiness has started to slowly trickle back into my life. I have felt exhilaration, excitement and love, but that holiday spirit seems to have died with Chris. 
I am hoping that the holidays will become a time of joy for me again. I can feel small dents in my armor, almost all of them chipped away by my children. Just this morning, as I watched their beautiful, flushed faces light up with excitement at the first snowflakes of the season; it was enough to melt any Grinch's heart. Just as I’m learning to navigate through life without him, I can learn to enjoy Christmas without him as well. Just as he will always be a part of our everyday lives, he will always be the angel at the top of our Christmas tree.  
This Christmas, I promise to try to open my heart to the holidays again. My kids will grow older, holiday traditions will be born, and their excitement will be contagious. I hope to fall in love with Christmas again through their eyes. 

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