I started this post two days before Christmas – in the middle of writing, a part of my life changed and I had to go – I am just getting back to it now. Rather than start all over, I think it’s important to share these changing moments in life. They are real, they are raw, and they can come at you at any time.
THEN: It’s two days before Christmas and all I want to do is skip it. This whole month of December has been the worst December of my life. Losing our dog, dealing with piercing grief, my son not even caring about it, getting a crack in my car windshield from a rock and finding out it costs $1,000 to fix it which I don’t have right now, having little money for the holiday since we spent so much on our sick doggie the last couple months, and then we get a new dog thinking it will be a blessing and it has turned into a total disaster. So much for the Christmas miracle I so desperately needed.
I feel like I am in a foggy daze. I feel so many different emotions right now. Christmas is the last thing I want to deal with. I have tried to get into the Christmas spirit – but it’s all fake, all on the cracking surface. I am feeling a lot of latent anger coming out inside and if I let that go for too long, I start to hurt myself. I don’t cut or anything like that, I just get so angry that I pound my fist against my leg or hip. It’s rare but it happens.
I think I am obviously still very much in grief over our lost dog. That incident alone marred this month, let alone everything else. In not allowing myself to feel anything for 6 years, I think it makes it even more difficult now that I allow myself to feel. Swallowed feelings and emotions have to come out eventually…
NOW: We had to give our new little dog back – turns out we are very allergic to her. That decision came in a phone call with my husband while I was writing the above post. Off I went and we returned her to her previous foster parents. I broke down in tears that wouldn’t stop. It wasn’t so much for her but rather that she had, for just those few days, filled the emptiness in our house that losing our Scottie boy had left. In giving her back, that emptiness reappeared and my husband and I grieved for our lost little boy all over again.
Christmas itself was tough, our first Christmas without Scottie. It may not seem like much but he used to open his own little presents – toys and treats. He’d rip through the wrapping paper and everything. The loss of him this month and not having him at Christmas was almost too much to bare. He had been with us for 13 years! Sadness was all I felt when I looked at our decorated tree and as I opened gifts. I just wanted it to be over.
Yesterday I took down all the decorations. We usually leave them up till New Years Day but I just couldn’t wait – looking at it all only reminded me of the pain and loss. But the truth is, it hurt to see it gone too. Christmas decorations will now always remind me of what we went through with Scottie earlier this month. Now that the decorations are gone, it’s almost like he’s gone again in a way. I’m not sure if that even makes sense.
And now, as we head into a new year, with my family drama in the past (as much as it can be anyway) and with trying to live with the new emptiness and loss, I’m not sure what to expect for this year. Big changes are ahead for my family (I will post about that separately) and it could change a lot of things. I will be faced with some challenges I have been avoiding for a couple years now. I am going into it with a sense of strength and maybe a dash of courage – I just wish it wasn’t with sadness and doubt. But at least for the first time in a long time, I am facing the future with a little hope.
I didn’t get my Christmas miracle but in not getting it, I realize I am still here and still moving forward. There must be something in me pushing me to keep going even with all the pain and loss. It’s actually kind of weird – I have been through so much at this point that it’s almost as if I refuse to let anything else take me down! Bring it on – you can’t be broken past a certain point, you just have to start rebuilding.