We meet so many people in a lifetime, some we keep in touch with forever, while others come and go a little more quickly. It is so nice to have friends who you can just pick right up where you left off the last time you saw them. Sometimes separations are caused when one of the friends moves away, or any number of other circumstances, but regardless, you can always give them a call, send a text or better yet, a visit, knowing your heart will be filled with wonderful memories shared, and you will have time spent with those who love you unconditionally. These people are rare. Then there are friends who for whatever reason just disappear from your life, leaving you wondering why, or maybe you know why, but still consider the possibilities of what that friendship would have been like had it continued. But were they really your friend if they just disappeared anyway?. Probably not. But more importantly, we have family who often times go from our lives far too soon, in particular, our children.
For some reason, this year, this holiday season has been one of the most difficult ones in a while. Those who have lost a child certainly know what I am talking about. Our lives are forever changed. There is one less present to buy, one less person at the table, or one less person that you hope travels safely to your home during the busy holiday season. Oh what we would give to look out the window and see them pull into the driveway on Christmas Eve, or to see them open just one more present. Or maybe even read together one more time, Twas the Night Before Christmas, even though they are plenty old enough to read themselves. Or……
We know we can’t live with “if onlys, what ifs”…..Though they certainly are swirling around in my head and heart this holiday season. When a child dies, it hurts forever, though eventually the hurt eases a bit, but this year it just isn’t easing up. Why?
I just came from the Compassionate Friends Christmas Memorial, as I have every year since my son died, (except for while I was in China, and even then somebody went in my place) and I light the traditional Christmas candle as a video is shown of our children who are gone, but not forgotten. I never have the heart to blow it out after the memorial,rather, I just cup my hand around the flame to keep the wind from blowing it out as I carry it to my car. This year, for the first time ever, the wind blew the candle out as I was opening my car door. My heart sank. Now what? Heavy sigh. I guess i will just relight it, but it’s not the same.
Wishing every parent who is spending this holiday without their child a peaceful heart with many memories to warm your heart, especially if your light has been extinguished.