As I stare at my bare Christmas tree I hear Bing Crosby singing in the background his classic holiday song, “I’ll Be Home for Christmas.” My tree has been up for a week now with only a strand of blue lights to decorate it. I sorrowfully realize that the blue lights this year resemble the “blues” in my heart and soul this past year. The pine tree stands tall as I do on the outside, but its essence, its soul is just flickering blue lights lacking decorations to celebrate it. My heart softly tells me it is not “home” for Christmas this year.
A Year of Transitions
This past year of 2012 has been one of many transitions for me both happy and painful. This year I have experienced endings and new beginnings in my life. A few of these endings hold pain beyond words such as the emotional distancing of a child from me that as a Mother I can only wait in love for her return. A child I was so close to whose absence in my life has left me with a bleeding wound of “Why did you leave me?” with no answers as to why.
The unexpected passing of my Soul Kitty Gracie as her spirit left this world. I cradled Grace in my arms she drew her last breath. Grace, who was always there for me, especially during the darkest moments of my life, protecting, loving and comforting me as only she knew how.
November came and my Dad passed away, again I witnessed a Spirit leaving this world as he drew his last breath. Another love of my life gone as his spirit soared to the heavens, another loss of someone who understood and accepted me for who I was beyond being his daughter. Within the week that Dad died, my Mom had to be placed immediately in a nursing home, mourning in confusion as to where the love of her life of 74 years was and the loss of her home.
We the children in the heaviest sorrows we have ever experienced closed the doors to the family home, fondly called “508” that my parents built over 67 years ago. For the first time as long as my siblings and the grandchildren can remember, 508 will stand silent and empty on Christmas Eve and Day. My heart has been mourning to be home for Christmas, a home that now only exists in memories and dreams.
Decorations of Blessings
I gaze at this Christmas tree of blue lights and no decorations and my heart whispers this year has not been transitions of all sorrows but also of many blessings. It is then I awaken to the fact that I am home for Christmas, it is here, in my home, with my cherished husband and our pack of canines and felines. I will decorate my tall pine tree of blue lights with decorations and ornaments of a new granddaughter born in October, two other grandchildren who when they run into Grandma MJ’s arms my heart just bursts with love and joy for them. I have grown children who are still my “babies” but I see the wonderful adults they have become and I am so proud of them. My heart sings out in happiness to still hear them say, “Hey Mom!”
My decorations include new friends that have brought me new meaning to my life, clients who express their gratitude at how much I have helped them. I have watched and participated in the bonding of love with my cousins as we have rallied around each other to grieve the closing of the final chapters of our childhood to become the Matriarchs of our dwindling family of childhoods past. We now hold the responsibility of passing the legacy of our families down to the next generation. We do it with love with our arms encircled around each other in love even if we are miles apart.
Welcome Home for Christmas
I have been looking behind me for so long this year I forgot to look in front of me, the Present, the Gift of Now. This is where I belong now, this is where my soul has been looking to rest and heal. I will tenderly kiss my husband under the mistletoe; lovingly hold my children and grandchildren as I pass on to them the legacy of joy and love of Christmas Past to Christmas Present.
As I joyously decorate my tall pine tree of sparkling blue lights my heart whispers to me,
“Welcome Home for Christmas!”