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bethonbackporchYes, here I am — sitting on my parent’s wicker furniture enjoying the weather.

I actually had a few minutes to myself to sift through my thoughts.  I realized I have been suppressing grief concerning my parents with the holidays approaching.  It was this time of year that my Mom would start hounding me about decorating their home for Christmas.   She would always start asking in October and I always used the excuse that I refused to do it before November.  But soon after, she normally got her way and her house was decorated from top to bottom.  It was no small undertaking either!  Her house was adorned with  a snowman collection, Christmas place-mats, Christmas tree napkin rings, garland, bows, Christmas train, Christmas tree, nativity scene and more.  It was quite a job that I dreaded each year.

Now, it seems odd not to have the harassment.  I might have to put a Christmas wreath on their door and decorate their lamp-post as usual.  I don’t think I could stand leaving the house unadorned this year.   Even though my Mom died in June, she was already asking me to decorate her house.  I guess I am kind-of beating myself up for not giving her that dying wish.  She loved Christmas so much and all of the color in her house brought her a lot of joy.

Our daughter has been practicing Christmas music at school and the songs make pain well up within me.  I cannot let the loss of my parents take away from the reason we celebrate Christmas.  It is about Jesus — NOT ME and my emotions.  Father, help me.

Christmas has always been one of my FAVORITE times of the year and  I want that to continue.

For the past several years I would cry as I left my parent’s house … just knowing it would be the last year I would spend a Christmas dinner with my family in their home.  Last year I was more certain than ever.

Here is a picture of my parents last year.   I knew it would be nothing short of a miracle for them to be here another year.

parents122511 This was taken Christmas night.   It is still too painful to look at pictures of my parents.   I really never anticipated this level of yearning to have them in my life.  I guess that is silly, but at first — there is such relief mixed with the grief because they were suffering so much.  But now there is more of a sense of loss.   Even after all of these months I catch myself wanting to tell my parents things.  We had our highest number of guests on our farm in 4 years and I caught myself wanting to share with them.  Then when my childhood friend’s father died yesterday, I immediately thought to call them so they would know.

I guess it takes a lot more time than I anticipated.

It also doesn’t help that my life was so intertwined with theirs.

I certainly would love to see how my parents look now in heaven.  It would be such a wonderful gift to replace the images that fill my mind.

Forgive me for such a downer post.   I just have them on my mind.

Please pray for my friend Tammy who lost her dad suddenly yesterday.  The funeral is tomorrow (Wednesday).  Also, would you please pray for another friend named Tammy whose grandmother died today.  She was like a mother to her.

God bless you all.