for the season

this time of year is always hard for the memories — but sometimes you can leave the loss behind and remember the good times. remember how our loved ones made us smile … how the emptiness and hurt is only so big because they were so wonderful.

sometimes it seems like too many have gone, and ‘alone’ is this huge monster of grief that one must battle every day. you want to see the NOW, those who are currently in your life or contributing to the everyday madness. and as much as it would be nice to only focus on good things from the past, those moments that made life worthwhile and special — too often they only provide a great contrast for the holes that were left behind.

these days i almost cringe, when someone hears my tale for the first time; how i lost my family in an airplane accident when i was only 7. it turns something around, in how you are seen. maybe as a victim? as someone who does not tread the same road as everyone else.

thing about getting older, over the years — the rest start catching up to you in losses. parents who fell ill. siblings in accidents. the lists go on and each person’s pain is their own.

it’s very tempting to feel sorry for oneself. to wrap your world in empty space and empty dreams. who could understand? no one has been through the things you have had to overcome. and i suppose it becomes almost an insult – to be expected to participate in “holiday cheer.” what is there to be happy about?

i have no answers, except this: remember what makes you smile. hold that close, don’t ever let it get away. i remember my mom digging in the garden, complaining how fat her legs were. they looked fine to me. i remember dad showing me how to tie my shoes. i remember my grandmother’s sorrow — but more importantly i can recall the look on her face when we went to the beach … how she looked out over the ocean and you just knew that time had somehow made her whole.

or that she never was broken. THAT is what i carry with me, every day. every time the world decides sorrow is the place or thing that you should feel and have for all the loss ……. i remember and i SMILE. every path effects another. but that is the sheer beauty of everything good.

may your holiday be wonderful, days full of memories. don’t let sorrow find you somewhere you don’t belong. Life is too short, they say. but the main thing is to remember the love. remember we all have our faults, pluses and minuses. and it’s not that loved ones looked over that, it’s not how much they loved you. it’s how much you loved them and were grateful for every moment.

that’s what makes the now a point of hope. because when you’re thankful for the past … the present becomes a celebration of life. and then you’re not so much a survivor, as the person who knows how to smile — and mean it.


16 Replies to “for the season”

  1. You have taken deep complex emotions and distilled a truly meaningful message that is perfect in keeping with the time of the year’s new beginning. Your heart spoke here to mine and I’m sure many others. May your holidays be filled with the wonder of renewal.

  2. Lot of truth in your words, E. I think everyone who has lost someone should read this, because it IS so important to be able to let go of the pain from the past, and not focus on the pain in the present from not having them with us. The burden DOES get heavier this time of year, especially for those who don’t have anyone or many around during the holidays. Loneliness kills. But you’re so right about remembering what makes you smile! That’s absolutely crucial. I hope this Christmas finds you well and smiling. *Hugs*

    1. it does! though you wouldn’t know it from the talk i gave at church today, started tearing up part way through and couldn’t seem to stop…… but a chaplin that works for children’s hospital said he was glad i brought up the subject, is planning a meeting on grief next sunday.

      1. I think that’s great! What you said had an impact! Maybe because of what you said, people who are grieving will get help and find a way through it. 🙂 You made a difference! I’m sorry for your tears, though. I know they’re just part of the process, and some people see them as ‘cleansing’, (better out than in, as the chemicals which make up tears of sorrow are toxic to the body).

        1. true, is just you know how being raised to not have public displays of emotion, my grandmother would be mortified. you’d think we were royalty or something…. lol! but everyone was so nice, afterward at coffee hour so many wanting to talk to me…..

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