And I’ve never meant that more.
Sure, there’s shopping left to do and gifts to wrap, but that’s not even the half of it.
I know that even when I put the last piece of tape on the final present (.. I don’t say bow because my craft skills are so limited they can’t even exist in the hypothetical), there’s going to be a part of me that still won’t feel ready for this.
Life is fragile. Although it’s always technically true, it vibrates in my heart this year like a second heartbeat. This is an important Christmas; for my family and for my husband’s, and there’s so much I wish I could do, but even Santa can’t make my wishes come true.
I can’t make their illnesses go away. I can’t get my Mom back. I can’t stop her from disappearing from us. I can’t give my Dad (FIL) more time. I can’t be two places at once. I can’t stop the guilt. I can’t make it easier. I can’t stop the disappointment that I’m not watching my own kids open presents. I can’t stop the guilt I have about not making my Dad a Poppy. I can’t stop the sadness. I can’t stop time.
This is hard. This is going to be a hard Christmas.
I’m going to have to sit with this. Make peace with the chaos that will be there. Accept the pain that is inevitable. Accept that there’s no way to make this perfect, or even okay.
Accept that it will be painful. There will be guilt. There will be sadness. There will be joy. There will be frustration. There will be mounds and mounds of love. And I’m committed to feeling all of it.
Taking it one breath at a time. I won’t just let it happen to me, I will intently live every moment of this Christmas with whoever I’m with at the time. I will feel whatever is there, without judgement (and when there is inevitable judgement I will try to let that be there and hold some compassion). This is my goal for Christmas. It’s a huge undertaking, but it is doable. Making the most of it, knowing it will never be enough, and just letting it be.
I can be authentic. I can be compassionate. I can
take make every opportunity to fiercely love everyone around me. I can be present and mindful. I can make space for the grief and sadness, as well as the joy and love. I can hold them. I can soak up every moment. I can laugh and cry with them. I can accept that pain and sadness and frustration and guilt will be a part of my Christmas. I can take advantage of every moment I have. I can make a conscious choice to be all in. I can live my values. I can give as much love as humanly (or dragon-ly) possible.
I can live the hell out of this Christmas, even though I still wish I was holding different cards.