Monday, December 22, 2008

The Tenth Day of Christmas

the final lap begins...

Today Jason called to chat and at the last moment- right before he ended the call- he told me how today while he was working he realized that this year would be the first time ever that he and I will not be exchanging Christmas Eve gifts as has been our tradition since we can remember.

I had not even thought about it. But it is true. This year will be the first time that he and I will not be together on Christmas Eve. I cried. I couldn't help it- even though I desperately tried. Then I got upset. I called him back and told him he was a jerk for reminding me of such things right before hanging up. We laughed.

Holidays are not easy times for people who have lost loved ones who are very dear. My heart goes out to those who will be celebrating Christmas for the first time without someone they love this year. I ache for them... and the gift I celebrate today is not just for me... it is for everyone!

The gift of the unseen future. Wow.

So often we think of the future as 'uncertain'- not just 'unseen.' It is both. Why would something unseen be such a wonderful gift? Think about it.

Unseen things leave room for hope. They leave room for dreams. Unseen things leave room for ones heart to sore on the wind of possibility. That is where my heart is- flying high in the winds of what might be.

Right now our Christmas is small. Our family is small. We are strong- but battered. Is everything bad? Not at all.

As a whole, us here and Jason and Julie, are doing our best to enjoy each new year, making our own new traditions while finding strength in the old ones we still have. We have a renewed sense of enjoyment for every moment because you never know what life will bring. So why the forward glance?

In spite of our outlook there are still difficult moments- especially around holidays. So I catch myself dreaming of what might be in the unseen future. My heart takes flight on the hope that someday our Christmas will not be so small. One day it will be full again with laughter and joy. I dream... and when I do, I dream big. No one knows my dreams but me. They are the hope and expectation of my family's tomorrow.

To someone who has never been in my situation, I am afraid you might believe me to be someone who is living for the future and not the here and now. This is not the case at all. I simply find myself strengthened by the knowledge that better days are to come.

To anyone who finds themselves in a desperate situation this year; to anyone who is doing everything possible to keep their mind and heart busy; to anyone who is praying and hoping they don't have some sort of a mental break down on Christmas day... you have a gift this year. The gift of the 'unseen' future ahead. Allow hope to paint it to be the most beautiful picture you can dream.


Karla said...

Awesome! Thank God for the possibilities of the future!

Keith and Carla said...

Wonderful post!

Anonymous said...

I know that you have already had to deal with your first Christmas without, but I have not. You know when we lost grandma 10 days before Christmas in 2003 that was challenging. I want this year to be over I miss my dad so much, I know in time it will be easier so please don't give up on me. I just really want the holidays to be over and a new year to begin. Bah Hum Bug to me, love ya cuz.

Gene Holley said...

You never cease to amaze me! This thought is so moving. My love and prayers are with you. I wish I could carry this for you. You and Jason mean so much to me.

janet anglin said...

You're a strong young man that has such a positive outlook on everything, and I admire that so much!! I pray God's deepest and richest blessings for you and your family. You have certainly made your parents proud!

Lynda said...

This is the first Christmas without my dad and it is proving to be a lot harder than I thought it would be. Thanks for the post. I hope you have a VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS!

Joseph James said...

Thank you all for your kind words and Jody... I love you.