and so did the grandparents!!
We’ve got lotsa pictures to share from today!
seeing the evidence!
oh my! Santa’s pockets were so full of reindeer food that he dropped some on our floor. AGAIN!
The milk is gone Mommy!!
yes, that is a yardstick!
Demonstrating how this gift will be used…
Being a pirate and modeling his shark tooth necklace! Doesn’t he look like such a big boy here?!?!?!?
These were Aaron’s big Christmas wish, the Imaginext dinosaurs, which Aaron calls, “Dinosaurs in Gear.” He has been asking for these for the whole year.
oooh, cute new coat!
ARRRGGHH!!! An AWESOME pirate ship from NanaGrampy…
…which I will spend an hour putting together.
Can you see through the glare? My son SAW and CHOSE this gift for his Mommy all by himself…LOTR Pez dispensers!!
Somewhere between watching Aaron open gifts and sitting down to Christmas dinner, I realized I was truly having a nice day. I took nowhere NEAR the number of photos I usually take, which is a marker of how slow and reserved I was feeling. There were some lovely times of the day that I don’t have photos of at all, like when Sarah and Zack and the girls were over. I know that I didn’t feel it as deeply and joyfully as I usually do, but sometime during the day I noticed that I was actually enjoying myself. It was as if every desperate plea we made for this pain to ease was finally answered. It felt like the burden had been lifted, and while I knew that feeling was going to come and go, just knowing that it was possible was empowering, and it was an unbelievable relief. Just a little mercy and grace for us. We were given one precious day. I imagined that all the love and good wishes and words of support from people who had reached out to us had woven a net that lifted our pain from off of us and held it for us for a while. It really worked. We managed to have a good Christmas after all, to focus on Aaron, and to enjoy things as much as someone possibly could after going through what we have.
When we made it upstairs for the night, I expressed these thoughts to Chris, and wondered if he had thought about the day the same way. He said that the same thought had crossed his mind earlier in the day and he felt guilty for a moment, even thinking, “Wait, I shouldn’t be laughing! Why am I enjoying myself?” I think this kind of thing is pretty common during grieving. It’s so so hard to reconcile all the different feelings that course through us, so quickly and unpredictably, and leaving so much raw damage. I would later experience that instant of griever’s guilt on the one month mark of when Mara died. But we snap out of it, sometimes at least, and we let ourselves feel good again. And the moments when we feel good will come more and more and we will learn how to live with this loss.