My Mom is here, B is off from work, both kids are out of school. It's Christmas Eve (which, incidentally, I ALWAYS type as "Christmas Even" and then have to go back and correct) and all are out running last minute errands. I am home alone, vacuuming. Yes, that's right. I'm vacuuming. Give me a break, I'm neat and I find it soothing. Plus I'm a fan of instant gratification, it's a great mood booster.
I have a vivid memory of sitting at my parents' kitchen table last Christmas Eve, drinking with my brother and sis-in-law (Crown for him, martinis for us), exhausted and sad, and talking about which would be worse--the Christmas we were having or the Christmas yet to come, which we knew would be our first without Dad. Everyone kept telling me that it was the first without him that would be the hardest, which was just an inconceivable amount of pain. I didn't think it could get worse than watching him suffer, and having to pretend to be happy. And you know, still, even with the First Christmas staring me in the face, I think I was right. I miss him so much it reduces me to a puddle sometimes, but he's not in pain. He's not suffering. He's not sick. I think, though it's an infinitely tiny amount, this one is easier. I imagine somewhere, wherever his soul rests, it's a better place than here.
Though this year has royally sucked for the most part, I have been giving a handful of blessings. My children are happy and healthy. My Mom is taking steps forward to better her life. B has been incredibly supportive. I have gained new loves (Easy E and my carpenter-- you know who you are, and I love you both), and I have made it this far. I will continue on, and grow stronger for it. Of that I am certain.