The Best and Worst Parts of the Holiday Season

English: A cinnamon roll with glaze

This is a hard post to write if anyone, like me, has lost a loved one. My dad died eleven years ago on New Year’s Eve. The day before my parents’ wedding anniversary on January 1st. Not a day goes by that I don’t think of my dad in some way or another. He loved the holidays, he was our Christmas Santa, starting the celebration off with his special Christmas bell. He got so excited at the thought of getting and giving presents. Every Christmas, he would buy me a candle. It was a tradition.

When he was well and healthy and happy he could eat a huge amount without ever getting full and food was very important in his life (now you know where I get it from). My dad was playful and child-like, just the way I am and our two personalities were so very similar. I lost a part of myself when he died, the dynamics of our family are so different now; it took me years to adjust to it.

I still loved the holidays when my children were young and we could focus on them and see their sheer joy and excitement. But now, with children who are 17 and 19, there really isn’t that much fun left in it for me. We do get together every year on Christmas, we have the same fun, traditional meal of scrambled eggs and bacon, and Pillsbury cinnamon rolls with icing for dessert, but of course, I miss my Dad and my mom dearly misses her husband.

The memories are nice to have and I try to appreciate them, but during this time of year it’s hard to focus on that. I still love getting together at my mother’s house with my sister and her family. To see the four cousins together is magical at any age, now ages 21,  19 and a half, 19 and 17. With very little money this year, I’m afraid we had to be Scrooge and severely limit presents. What remains however, is still the love in our hearts and the piping hot aroma of the cinnamon buns’ sweet vanilla icing, but Santa’s Christmas bell has been silenced forever.

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