Where are you Christmas
Why can't I find you
Why have you gone away
Where is the laughter
You used to bring me
Why can't I hear music play
My world is changing
Does that mean Christmas changes too
Where are you Christmas
Do you remember
The one you used to know
I'm not the same one
See what the time's done
Is that why you have let me go...
Since last year, I cry every time I hear this song. It reminds me that there is a part of Christmas that will always be missing and, for which, I shall always be longing and searching.Yet, inevitably, it is here. Christmas arrives every 365 days, regardless of what we do or how we might try to put it off. As the days close in on another Christmas without one of my boys, I look back over the past year, and I am amazed at how much has changed. We have a new life in our home, and he is warm and sweet and dear. Our little girl will be 3 in March, and she is so aware of of Christmas and all the joy it brings. We have had to "downsize" our tree because Adler and Cameron play like little Neanderthals, and we'd like for it to remain standing until Christmas has passed.
Even in the midst of all these changes, I am still so often drawn to what remains the same. Boe is not here, and he never will be, at least, not physically. His stocking hangs on the mantle only to be filled with unopened and unread cards and sentiments. His booties hang on the tree never to be filled by his sweet little feet, but to remind us of the path he followed as he journeyed through our hearts to Heaven.
I know that I am at a different place with my grief than I was last year. Last year, I really struggled to get excited about the holidays. I kind of forced it for the sake of my surviving children and found myself immensely relieved when it was time to de-deck the halls.
This year, I find myself looking forward to Christmas morning. The anticipation of watching the kids tear into their gifts and seeing how they react to all that awaits them throughout this season puts a smile on my face. The joy that I am feeling does not take away from the fact that we will be without Boe during this season. I will miss him, and I am sure that, in the coming days, I will shed more than one tear for my little boy lost. That being said, I know that even if Boe is not here physically, he IS here. He is the star on our tree, he is in his booties, his stocking, in his brothers' and sister's squeals of delight. He is always with us, surrounding us like a warm blanket. He is letting us know that in moving through our life with joy and gratitude, we honor and love him the best way we possibly can.
Christmas without him will look different from year to year, changing as our children grow and mature. Christmas without him will never be what I had envisioned, but I know if I keep him near it can definitely be more wonderful, magical and joyful than I could ever have hoped.
Joyeux Noel, mon petit ange. Je t'aime.