Hello, dear readers.
A few words before you consider reading the rest of this post. For many of you, this will be a very special Christmas. The first as parent or parent to be, a fiancé, a wife, a grandparent. For others, this Christmas will be special purely because it will be as happy, boringly happy as it was last year. Those you hold dear have travelled well this year and together you will celebrate this feat. If you're in a good place right now, this may not be the post for you.
As hard as it has been to write this post, it had to be done. I'm not sure if this is 'just right' but it's 'just right for what I'm feeling now'. My intention is to be able to look back at this post this time next year with the benefit of hindsight and the healing that comes with time.
I usually don't have to think too hard about Christmas. The festive season is always a welcome full stop to the year. There is a familiarity each year to the 'far too early' appearance of Christmas merchandise in the stores. Which is followed by party invitations. And finally, things at work start winding down. Christmas itself arrives and with it the warmth of friendship, love and rosy reflections on the year that was. It just rolls around each year like clock work.
This year has been different. I won't bore you with the details but 2011 has been the hardest and most harrowing year of my life. At times it has been hard to appreciate the achievements, the holidays, happy times and friendships because they have often gotten lost in the depths of a great deal of pain and sadness. It is easy to be ungrateful for the blessings of the year as you cynically try to find the 'blessings' in the trials.
I'm also weary and tired. The cumulative effect of repeated loss, grief, adjustment, going to work, trying to be positive, going to appointments, going to blood tests, waiting, hoping. And the trying - trying to hope, trying not to hope too hard, crying, trying not to cry. Going to bed and then waking up to the same thing as yesterday and having to deal with it all. Again. And all the while attempting to lead an outwardly normal and functional life.
The thing about years like this is that they make Christmas feel just ... different. I somehow feel apart at a time when the rest of the world (for once) is preaching togetherness and commonality. The good will and cheer, the presents, the laughter and the happiness continue around you, occasionally penetrating the little vacuum you now find yourself in (so isolated have the year's events made you feel). Fortunately, though, the Christmas spirit is a force to be reckoned with. It's just so contagious. I think I'm starting to catch it.
Christmas is only a week away now and this has made me think about what I really want to receive. Some kind of miracle for 2012. Whether it be motherhood (major miracle), a viable pregnancy (slightly less major miracle) or acceptance of childlessness (potentially most realistic miracle). Whatever the year may bring, may I accept it with peace and grace. I have received one gift from this year already and that is strength. But it is not enough without peace and grace as well as faith. I have no idea how I'm going to find faith in the process but if I do, I'll share it with you.
And on that note, I will conclude. Merry Christmas, everyone and may yours be filled with happiness and love. I know I have so much of both, I just have to get out there and share the love I have received from so many people this year and watch as it brings happiness to others as well as myself.
Take care and God bless.