Today's Blogfest Prompt comes from Kathy Combs from the Giggling Truckers wife. I went off on a bit of a tangent... but it is an important tangent. I wrote and read and thought.... yes, I need to follow this thread.
I tend to remember the years these were by layering other memories on top of them. It was the year we bought our Astrovan. Katherine was in the last year of preschool. Mansour was about to come stay with us so Bianca was in the seventh or eighth grade.
I was home alone that Halloween night, for once I was the one to hand out the candy.
Isn’t that strange?
I am always the one hoofing around the neighborhood, taking the kids to parties, that sort of thing, but this time I was home. I was making phone calls about buying the car, I was giving out candy, I was sitting at my dining room table writing.
It was the days before the internet, before the homes were all filled with laptops and IPads.
It was me, my pen and my notebook.
I wrote how the trick-or-treaters were the ones who ushered in the holiday rush for the rest of the year. Once they arrived it was just a matter of holding on to our hats until the New Year.
I was working on an article for the newsletter I was editing for a support group for people who have lost babies due to miscarriage, stillbirth or early infant death. The holidays tend to be tough for us, no matter how many other babies come, no matter where we adventure in the back of our minds there are those children of ours who did not grow into little Marios or Luigis or Pocahontas or Cinderellas.
It has been a long time for me now, but as this season begins its frenetic maelstrom through the lives of all of us, I would like to pause for a moment to remember those whose holiday season doesn’t loom festive, instead the holidays loom heavy.
For those who need to put on a “Happy Mask” due to other people’s expectations.
For those who feel guilty for breaking long held traditions, knowing or not knowing that break will sever the ties to those traditions forever.
This will be a different holiday season for many. For those who have been grieving for more time, recognize the sacredness of this year among other years. For all of us, wrap yourselves in quilts of compassion. Take more time by the fireplace and less time at the shopping malls and grocery stores.
For those of you who know people who are grieving, I know it is natural but don’t try to “cheer your friend up” by doing what you think they would like done. Instead, invite them into your experience by saying, “Would you rather go out for coffee today or would you like me to shop with you and lend a hand?”
“Would you like me to come over and bake cookies for Sarah’s class party or would you prefer I sew Marti’s Thanksgiving apron at home and bring it over later?”
Don’t rush in with solutions, ask questions and be patient for responses.
Be willing to say, “I would be happy to come over and we can watch chick flicks, anything other than the rampage of holiday television shows. I’ll bring popcorn and beer!”
Each year is different with grief. I won’t say it gets better because it isn’t something that can be measured. It is more like… you integrate your grief experience differently.
I won’t end with any trite prescriptions like, “Be grateful for what you have,” or “All good things come to those who….” or “It will get better,” because those sorts of words usually only make the speaker feel better. She wants to tie her “taking care of the griever” in a big red bow.
We know better than that, don’t we.
Love, Love, Love.
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© 2012 by Julie Jordan Scott
Julie Jordan Scott has been a Life & Creativity Coach, Writer, Facilitator and Teleclass Leader since 1999. She is also an award winning Actor, Director, Artist and Mother Extraordinaire. She was twice the StoryTelling Slam champion in Bakersfield. She leads Writing Camp with JJS & this Summer will be traveling throughout the US to bring this unique, fun filled creative experience to the people wherever she finds the passion & the interest.
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