Thursday, December 16, 2010

No Christmas Spirit

I am positive this is all due to Barry being dead, but I have none. zilch. zip.  zero. none.

I have my tree up, and all my decor.  I even put light up candy canes outside on my front lawn, and you can see my tree through my bay window from the outside, and it looks awesome.

Yet something is missing.  It doesn't feel like Christmas here at all.  Well, maybe a little bit, but not very much at all.  I have all my shopping done, but have not wrapped any presents.  I have not done any baking.  I rarely listen to Christmas music.  We finally put together our gingerbread house last night.

In years past, this was all the norm.  I made dozens and dozens of cookies, Christmas music was on all the time ad nauseum, and I was just so excited for Christmas to come.  I shopped and shopped and planned everything out to the last detail.

Last year obviously was the exception, and I didn't do anything.  We didn't even make a gingerbread house, which has been a yearly tradition since I can remember.  Since E was a baby in 2002 actually.  Last year was horrid.  My friend Rebecca mentioned that because last year was such a blur, we were still in shock, that it's all hitting me this year.

I am doing so many different things this year, that its a bit disconcerting I think.  Maybe because we are going to Canada for Christmas that I haven't really planned too much.  Or maybe because Barry isn't with us anymore, that it doesn't feel like Christmas anymore.  This is our first "real" normal Christmas without him, and it isn't even a real Christmas because we are going out of the country and spending it with my family.

I have to force myself to wrap presents for the kids and I actually, I'm so slow with that!  I don't know, I just don't seem to care this year.  Maybe I'll feel differently once we get to my mom's place on Christmas eve and start celebrating.  But until then, I won't really know.  I just don't care about the holiday, and almost wish it would just be over and done with already.

Someone needs to give me some Christmas spirit and stat!  Let's not even talk about New Years Eve yet.

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

I had an idea, but now it's gone

I had this great idea about what to blog about the other day, and told one of my twitter friends about it, but then I forgot.  Oops.  It was something to do with grief, but I can't for the life of me recall what it was about, so I will share something that happened to me yesterday.

I was at MOPS yesterday for our annual Christmas meeting.  I've been going to this MOPS group for 5 years now! I can't believe it has been that long already, I started going a couple months before A was born in march of 06. The ladies welcomed me right in, and I've been a part of that group ever since.  We have lost some members due to their children being too old, or they moved away, or just decided not to come anymore, but there are still some of us hardcore members from back then that still have younger kids, or have had more kids.  New mom's join every year as they have babies, so the group in itself is pretty awesome, and I am so thankful for it.  My MOPS group has been there for me so much, especially last year when Barry passed and they provided meals for us, helped with funeral arrangements etc etc.

The first sob of the morning happened during our hospitality time, when we did all our hello's, raffles etc. Every month we celebrate anniversaries and birthdays. Well, this December would have been mine and Barry's 11th wedding anniversary.  Two ladies raised their hands because they had anniversaries in this month.  I did not until the last moment.  Then before I could start talking, I started sobbing.  It came out of nowhere. The tears started flowing and all I could manage to choke out was "Oh god" as I was crying.  I managed to calm down a bit, and then said "Barry and I would have had our 11th anniversary this month".  And I cried some more.  I wasn't expecting that to happen at all.  It really is amazing how quickly the tears can come on, with little to no warning at all.

Yesterday before we did our White Elephant gift exchange, we also had a Mentor moms panel where the more experienced older moms talked to us younger moms.  These "older" moms have kids that are usually close to my age or older, so they have been married about 30  years usually.  As they were all talking about marriage, mother hood and all that that entails, I started to get really irritated.  I almost got up and left the room.  I didn't want to be there hearing these women talk about their husbands they had had the pleasure to be married to for 30, 40 years.  Frankly, it PISSED ME OFF.  I was INSANELY jealous, but I managed to hold it together and keep the tears at bay as best as I could.  The last thing they addressed was being a single mom and if they had any tips for single moms.  I kind of had to laugh to myself because they didn't really know how to answer this question. At the end of that session, they asked if anyone had anything to share.  And up went my hand. I talked.  But mostly I cried.

I had noticed one thing these women never mentioned at all was really how to treat their husbands.  So through my big crocodile tears, and snotty nose, and sobs escaping me, I told my story to the mom's that had never heard it.  I explained to them how Barry had died last year because some of the mom's were new and didn't know me last year.  Then I got to the point of what I had to say.  I said two things:

Never ever take your husbands for granted, and always, always say I love you, because you never know when you will have your last moment with them.

And I cried, and cried and cried. I know some of the other women were crying.  Someone gave me tissues, and I got a couple hugs.  It just amazed me that these good Christian women forgot the two most important things.  How could you forget those? They are so vital to a good marriage.  I know that first hand. I am so thankful that Barry died knowing I loved him.  One thing I wish though, is that I could tell him one last time that I loved him.  I did get to say my goodbyes, and I did tell him I loved him as they were doing CPR and I know he heard me, but just to say it to his face as he looks me would make me so happy.  My memories of that morning are foggy because of everything that went on, and I know I told him I loved him when he was still alive, because we ALWAYS were telling each other we loved each other, I just wish I could remember.

Sunday, December 05, 2010

Feels Like It's Been Forever

I was thinking this morning that I couldn't remember the last time I blogged, I didn't realize it had only been two weeks ago.  I guess this is what happens when life goes on, right? I tend to forget that I have to blog, that I even have a blog really.

Nothing much new is going on, though we are well into the Christmas season already.  I did buy that new tree like I said I would, and I am SO happy with it.  It was a breeze to put up, took all of 10 minutes.  I still have the old tree in my garage, and I am pretty sure that will be going to Goodwill this week along with another truck full of stuff.  I am finally ready to let go of some things, one of them being the tree and the other being Barry's fridge that he had in his truck.  They are just taking up space in my garage, so it is time to say goodbye to them.  What purpose do they serve anyway but gathering dust? Someone else can use them.

I can't remember if I have blogged about what we are doing for Christmas, so if I have, please forgive me. I don't have the energy...or should I say I am too lazy, to go back and see if I did already. The kids and I will be having Christmas at our house on the evening of the 23d, and then going to my hometown to spend Christmas with my family.  I really have a lot of mixed emotions on this, because I really wanted us to spend our first Christmas here in this house, here.  But I do believe it is more important for us to be around family right now anyway.  Perhaps next year will be different.  We'll be spending Christmas Eve at my mom's house, and then Christmas Day at my Dad's place.  Then the next day my brother and I will pack up the kids, and head back here for a couple days, and he'll take the Amtrak back.  We haven't seen him in a year, since last Christmas, so it will be nice to have him at my house too for awhile and he can spend some much needed time with the kids.  They love their Uncle, so it will be nice for them too.

Quite honestly, I am just not ready to tackle this major holiday on my own without family around.  I can't do it yet.  It's still too raw and painful, and being alone with out anyone but me and the kids would just bring so much attention to who is missing.  At least if we are with family we can be distracted, and have fun.  That doesn't change that I will still miss Barry, and think of him all day long, but we at least will still be able to have a fun day without too much sadness.  I hope.  Last year was the worst Christmas ever, and I don't ever want to experience that again.

My plans for mine and Barry's anniversary have started to take form too, but I haven't quite decided yet what the kids and I will do.  I am pretty sure I will be taking them to Barry's favorite restaurant, the Chinese Buffet he loved so much.  We loved it as a family actually, and haven't been there in months.  Since his birthday in march I think.  I guess I'll be buying him an anniversary card too.  It amazes me that this year would mark our 11th wedding anniversary.  Unbelievable. Time flows by so quickly, doesn't it? Just 12 years ago today I was a young girl of 18 and had no idea that I would soon be meeting the guy I was to marry in a yahoo chat room, and marry him just a year later.  What a difference 12 years makes.

Well, it's the last day of the weekend, and I need to go load up my Honda Pilot with goodwill items, and clean this house.  I will write again soon, I've just been pretty busy being mommy.