The other night at dinner I was reminded of a conversation that I had with my niece during our family reunion last summer. She reminded me of a comment I had made that went something like: “Wouldn’t it be fun to onetime spend Christmas together as a family?” Because all of my siblings, including her father are scattered far and wide all living in a variety of places, we haven’t been together for Christmas in well over 20 years. I loved the idea of having a large place to meet,decorating a giant Christmas tree, drinking hot cocoa, playing marathon table games and lots of story telling and laughing.
I guess I should be very careful about what I wish for. It is an unfortunate set of circumstances that bring me to Idaho and not remain in Washington with my Sweet Husband and our Sweet Daughter to share our Christmas traditions. My mother passed away on Sunday the 20th and this event has set into place a chain of events that will bring many of us together to celebrate her life. Just so you know this not the Christmas image that was dancing around in my head when I was talking with my Sweet Niece. My mom was 83 and had been in declining health for several months, her death was not unexpected and yet it seemed so sudden. I truly expected her to outlive all of us.
I am amazed at the complete irony of the situation. I don’t think there is a worse time to have a death in the family and yet I know of four families right now that are going through the same thing…that is weird. The gallows humor runs rampant with us and my mom would have been a lead contributor…if she were here. So we’ve decided to make the best of a not so good situation. If we’re going to be here for Christmas, well then let’s have Christmas damnit! We decorated mom’s teeny apartment for Christmas, we made Christmas cookies and fudge as we poked through papers and her various collections of ‘whatever’. We had Christmas music on and then switched to some of her favorite cd’s when we grew weary of musical Christmas. Here’s another wrinkle not only is tomorrow Christmas, but it’s my youngest brothers birthday, that has to doubly suck. He’s always gotten the short end of the stick for Christmas. I think we should have a surprise party, we’re all here anyway…shhh don’t tell.
Time is really all we have right now, so as mom’s last command performance of her kids, we will spend this time remincesing, laughing through those occasional tears all the while wondering what happened that brought us here and wondering when we will all be together again.
So raise a cup of cheer and let’s send Virginia on her way….bottom’s up and Feliz navidad!