A couple of weeks ago I couldn’t imagine writing this blog post
But here I am…so I thought I’d keep it real. The last two weeks have been mixed – to say the least.
- Dec 1- 4 We went to So Cal to visit my 93 year-old father who has lung cancer, and my husband’s 97 year-old father who was on hospice. Traveling with all my oxygen equipment is super tiring for me
- Dec 6 My husband’s father passed away
- Dec 7 My husband had a total hip replacement as an out patient procedure (had surgery at 7:30 and was home by 2:00). I’ve been his caregiver and it was exhausting for me physically, especially the first few days. We’ve had a nurse or physical therapy visit at home almost every day. Imagine me carting around my oxygen everywhere helping my hubby on a walker. Not a pretty site
- Dec 8 My sister-in-law had surgery – Praise, she’s doing fine
- Dec 15 My sister had surgery – Praise, she’s doing fine
- Dec 17 My uncle passed away
There have been positives too…
- We’re so glad we were able to see Dave’s Dad before he passed away
- Friends brought us meals
- Family members helped with lots of needs
- My hubby is recovering very quickly. He abandoned his walker and is already using a cane. Because he’s doing so well, I’m not quite as exhausted.
All this to say…this year, Christmas is a mixed bag for us. The good is mixed with grief, exhaustion and mounds of things undone.
But some things haven’t changed:
- The wonder of Christ’s birth
- His warmth, provision and care for us
- The company of friends and loved ones
- The assurance we are safely in His Hands
I’m sure many of you can relate to this time of year being mixed, even though your circumstances may be different. Grief, family conflicts, financial hardships and unrealistic expectations are common contributors to mixed experiences at Christmas.
So, our strategy for the rest of this season is to allow our grief and tiredness while caring for ourselves and soaking in the blessings around us:
- Beautiful lights
- Reflecting on Christ’s birth and Hope in Him
- Cuddling up with blankets and watching Christmas movies
- Reading good books
- Listening to Christmas music
- Trying to rest
- Looking for unexpected blessings
I think the key is to be real and present with whatever aspects are true for you
It takes maturity to hold both realities at the same time…grief and goodness; disappointments and blessings; stress and trust in God. We need to fight against the tendency to see things as all good or all bad. It’s possible and healthy to notice the struggles while also noticing the good.
How about you? I would love your input!
How do you handle the ups and downs of Christmas? What resonated with you? How can you care for yourself in kind ways this season?
Please leave your comments below and share on social media or via e-mail with others who might benefit!