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‘Tis the Season

As we get closer to December 25th, the bells seem to chime louder, cookies pile higher, and the lights get brighter. We are blasted, from November 1st, with the reminder of what the average American thinks of when it comes to Christmas. I’m not talking about the birth of Christ. I am talking about the nostalgia, traditions, and family of the season.
Family. 
That word rests so heavy on my heart tonight.
Being military, I have always been sensitive to others without family near them during the holidays. We’ve hosted people over our house almost every holiday. Whether it was a couple of lonely airmen, a new family that just moved to base, or a large group of vagabonds that we really don’t know, all have been welcome.
But there was a group of people who I just couldn’t relate to. I didn’t fully have the heart to know where they were coming from or how their holiday may feel.
This group was those that lost loved ones.
Obviously, now I am in that group. One that yes, I have been in for a long time, given that I have lost beloved grandparents and a few friends. But never has there been such a year, until last year, where the empty space at the table was like a loud ringing in the ears, reminding me over and over that the seat was empty.
I’m so sorry that anyone else has to face this.
My heart breaks because I know how deep this pain runs. It literally has taken my breath away and brought me to my knees.
There is nothing on this earth that can mend this wound. The season has torn it open and no wrappings or ribbons can close it.
I’m learning to just embrace it.
I used to feel ashamed of crying.
I used to be embarrassed if anyone saw that I had an ounce of emotion about anything.
Why?
I really have no other answer to that than pride. Letting down my walls means I am human.
But oh, how I wish to look at letting down my walls as a way to show that I live. The amount of tears I drop on the floor are the amount of hours I think of my love for Molly and Peter, who is deployed. I see crying as a way to let out my love for them.
May sound funny to look at crying that way, but the more I love someone, the more it hurts when they leave.
I love Molly so deeply. She began life in my body and ended it in my arms. I have always had her with me her whole life. I knew her breath, her heartbeat, and her song. To no longer have that in my life… well, there really are no words. But there are tears.
I don’t know what to do about this season. Usually I have some kind of plan. I usually have a verse or a Bible story to apply to my latest trouble. Heck, I at least have a song. This time, I have nothing.
Perhaps, that is not true.
I have One to cling to. But no words to speak. I fall into His arms, lifeless. He must carry me. Get me to my next destination. Mother for me. Teach for me. Cook for me. Clean for me. He must be the strength that is needed right now, because my strength is spent grieving, just for a season.
Like Christmas, soon after a new year comes. New beginnings. Time of reflection, renewals, and starts. I’m not saying I am out of commission until January, I am just saying that this is a period of time that I will cry. And that is alright. I embrace my grief like a warm blanket. I wrap it around me for warmth and a reminder to feel.
Feel the love. Feel the pain. Feel the loss.
Posted December 6, 2016

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