Wishing You All A Very Merry Christmas ( a little bit early)!

I just wanted to wish you all a Merry Christmas or a Happy Holiday if you don’t celebrate Christmas! I know I probably won’t really have time to write any posts for the next weekend with all the family activities I’ll be engaging in and the 4 hour drive to and from my dad’s house so I figured I’d do it now!

I love the holidays. I think they were so much more enchanting and magical when I was younger but I still feel the same giddy rush during this time. Now I think I just love spending time with my family and picking out thoughtful gifts for people. I have to say I’ve become more of a grinch the older I’ve gotten because I tire of all the craziness that seems to come out of people around this time but I do enjoy it. I love the lights, the tree, the Christmas cheer, the snow, the shiny paper, the food, etc.

A lot of you who know me well or have been reading my blog since I started in June know that I lost my mother in July 2006 to brain cancer. Christmas is always the hardest without her. She always made Christmas such a special day for us. I love the way she decorated and the way she always knew what I wanted as a child. We’d always watch the Grinch together and all those classic Christmas movies. I loved helping her decorate the trees with Christmas music blaring. I will never forget when I was 12 or something and Hanson was my favorite bad. She came home with the Hanson Christmas cd and I was sooo embarrassed and all, “OMG I can’t believe my mom is trying to listen to my favorite band.” I still have that damn cd and faithfully listen to it every year. She spoiled us (in a good way!) and Christmas was always magical for us. I miss her a lot this year. It’s been a blah sort of year for me and sometimes I just know how much I need the direction of my mom. She’d know how to help me with finding a job and figuring out my life. While I was trying to find these pictures I had a meltdown. I miss my mom. It’s really hard to believe, still to this day, that she is gone. I look at these pictures and I just miss her to pieces.

On top of things, I have to be strong this Christmas. Perhaps this is the reason I am writing to you all, my blogging family, to get this all out. My boyfriend lost his dad this March and it will be his first Christmas without his dad. He lost his real mom when he was little. He still has a stepmom but I know it’s just not going to be the same for him. His dad was his best friend and he was his dad’s only child. I have to be strong for him because I know what this will feel like. I have to be strong because he needs me–I know he does. I know he’d be mad for keeping it in but I also know that he’d push aside his feelings and sadness to help me. I don’t want that.

Anyways, I’m not going to keep going on. I will be ok. I guess my Christmas wish for all of you, my friends, (besides getting tons of books!) is to enjoy the time with your family. I know we all have our problems. I know my family isn’t perfect but I wish I could just go back in time and appreciate my mom more. I think each year I keep hoping for that kind of Christmas miracle. For those of you who have lost family members, I am so so sorry. Know that you aren’t alone. I know how hard it is to start over again without your loved ones. It’s painful but it’s made me appreciate these holidays with my family and my boyfriend. I live 4 hours from my dad and I now make it a priority to make it up there. The time I have with my dad, my little sister and stepmom has become so much more meaningful. It has all become ridiculously significant.

This wasn’t supposed to turn into this kind of post. It was supposed to be more lighthearted and talk about Christmas traditions and memories and what you all were doing for the holidays. I still DO want to know all of that stuff but this was what was on my heart tonight so my fingers just followed. So tell me..what are you doing? Tell me your favorite memories and traditions.

Hope your holiday is great! Just so you all know, I am so appreciative for the community atmosphere on my blog. You guys rock!

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About Jamie

Jamie is a 30 year old married lady who is in denial that she's actually that old. When she's not reading you can find her doing Pilates followed by eating ice cream, listening to music with oversized headphones and having adventures with her husband and dog.

Comments

  1. Jen (Makeshift Bookmark) says:

    I don't even know what to say to encompass a fraction of what I feel after reading this post. Tears are streaming down my face and I just want to give you a big hug and tell you that it's going to be okay. And I wish I could make it okay.
    I'm so, so sorry youve had to go through this. We've already talked about it earlier tonight, but I want you to know how much I admire you and your strength and I'm so glad I can call you my friend.
    You are so strong and selfless. Everyone should know that. And these pictures are beautiful. I'm so happy that you have wonderful memories of your mom. She has so much to be proud of in you <3

  2. the story siren says:

    can i ditto what Jen said.

    You are an amazing person, and an even stronger person because you experienced this. And I know that is a completely sucky for me to say…. but I mean it in the most respectful way.

    I admire your strength and you should too. Cherish those memories that you do have and let those get you through the tough times. And when those aren't enough turn to the people you do have in your life that love you and we'll help you make it though!

    Thank you for being you, the wonderful person you are. (which I'm sure your mom had a helping hand in.)

  3. I was going to write something Meaningful, but Jen pretty much said it in a way I can't top. We're here for you through the good and bad, I hope you have a wonderful Christmas. Let your boyfriend know I'm thinking and praying for you both.

    I will be sticking around here, to answer your question about what we're all doing. Though my extended family flaked out and won't be hosting Christmas this year. We'll be spending it at a family friend's house and it will be a lot of fun, especially considering I won't be the oldest offspring under 40.

  4. Jazzie Casas says:

    Married… divorced… separated… never together… what does any relationship status have to do with a man's parental duty? Once you’re a father, you're always a father. There is no you in the formula of life anymore. There is always at least one other person standing beside you in that equation. Always. Own that. And never leave that behind.

    Proud to be a Single Dad

  5. Jamie, this was a great post. Thanks for sharing something so personal with us. Stories like this really remind me to not take anything for granted.

    And all I really can say is that how completely awesome is it that I have a picture of myself as a baby in the exact same dress you are wearing in the first photo?

    Merry Christmas, dear. I hope that there is some good memories for you this year

  6. It was wonderful seeing these pictures. Thanks for sharing them, Jamie! Like Kristi said, cherish these memories and you will always be able to get through even the worst of times. I hope you have an amazing year ahead !
    Merry Christmas!

  7. I'm sure I'd have more to write if I wasn't crying…..but I hope you and your boyfriend have an awesome Christmas with the family that you do have and are able to think fondly on all the memories you have of those who won't be with you this year. I love all these pictures; it's so wonderful that you have all of these things to look through.

    Ultimately, I can't say I know what you're going through. Thankfully I haven't had to go through anything so painful yet, but I'd like to believe that I will have your strength when the time comes. Your boyfriend is certainly lucky to have somebody like you there to help him through his own loss.

    This is going to be the first Christmas I spend doing Christmasy things (as opposed to movie and Chinese food), so it will be interesting. I might still bring some Chinese food to Christmas dinner 😉 Will be thinking of you and hoping you have a great Christmas.

  8. Ginger @ GReads! says:

    My heart goes out to you Jamie right now. I won't say I know how you're feeling, even though I too lost my mom to cancer way too soon. Because everyone's situation is different & you can't compare the pain or the hurt. You remind me so much of myself at your age though. And as everyone else said, believe it or not.. you WILL be ok. Life is funny like that. It continues to change & evolve, even when we think there's no possible way. Somehow.. some way we pick ourselves up & go about our daily lives.

    Remembering your mom is the best thing you can do this time of year. And by making it a priority to spend the holidays with your dad is even better. I feel the same exact way. I cling to my sisters & my dad because I know what it's like to lose a part of yourself. It's awful that we've had to experience this tragedy, but at the same time.. we truly know what it means to appreciate every little thing.

    I wish I were there to give you a great big hug right now. Just know that I am thinking of you. Always.

    And to answer your question: a favorite Holiday memory of mine is walking downstairs Christmas morning to find our presents wrapped & placed in separate piles around the living room. My mom always said it was "Santa" who did it, but we knew better – NO ONE could wrap gifts as good as her 😉 It's funny b/c my dad still to this day tries to mimic her traditions – I'll still find my gifts in a pile at his house when I go to visit on Christmas day.

    Ok.. must close this forever long comment now! I'm at work & I'm crying! lol Love you girl!!

  9. JessiKay89 says:

    Jamie, this was a great post and much like the great ladies above me who commented, I truly admire your strength. I'll keep you and your boyfriend in my thoughts this holiday season, and I hope you have an amazing Christmas. Thank you for sharing with us, and thank you for remaining true to who you are. I feel lucky to have "met" you through our blogging endeavors.

    This year, we'll be doing what we always do–we start out Christmas morning at our house and then it's up to my grandma's house for the rest of the day. It's nothing spectacular, but I love it.

  10. What a beautiful post–brought me to tears. There has been a lot of loss in my live, my friends' lives and my family this year, so I understand the sentiment behind realizing how important it is to embrace family time. Sending all my love to you and your bf this week <3 <3 <3

  11. My nose is already running enough since I have a cold and now it's running even more, lol. Thanks so much for sharing! Sometimes all of use get swept off at Christmas time with the food and presents and we don't pay enough attention to our family, thanks for reminding me that gifts are not the important things.

    I know my mom always has trouble at Christmas. My grandma, when I was a sophomore in high school so about 10 or more years ago(I think), died on Dec. 19th and then was buried on Dec. 22nd, her birthday. In a way, right before Christmas, is always a really hard time for my mom and probably always will be since they both depended on each other in different ways and were possibly best friends.

  12. Christina/Book Addict says:

    Jamie- I admire you SOOO much! You are such a positive person and I know that we all have so much to learn from you…..your Christmas message is so important and I needed that reminder. The pictures you shared with us are beautiful!

    I've only hung out with you twice, but you really made an impression on me. You are one of the most thoughtful people I know. Thanks for reminding us what Christmas is all about. Your outlook on life is an inspiration-seriously. I wish you all the best this holiday season. I'm sending positive thoughts your way as well as your boyfriend. 🙂 And we should hangout again soon! 🙂

  13. You're a tough girl who has been through a lot and I know that your mom is smiling down on you right now and loving you even more for who you are turning out to be. I know that you and your boyfriend will be each other's strength right now and that is so special for your relationship…. it's building a bond that will only get better over time. The fact that you now take the time to appreciate your family more and you acknowledge that it's important is a tribute to the perfect daughter your mom raised.

    My heat goes out to you and if you need anything…. let me know.

  14. This is such a great post. Thank you for being willing to put yourself out there to remind the rest of us what is important in life. I am also grateful for your post for personal reasons – my husband lost his mother to cancer 8 years ago and Christmas is a very hard time for him. He isn't very talkative about his sad emotions so sometimes it is hard to know what he is thinking. I feel like reading about your emotions gave me a window into how my husband might be feeling, if that makes sense? Now I think I will be able to be more sensitive to what he needs this Christmas. So thank you so much for sharing. I am so sad for both you and your boyfriend's losses – you'll be in my thoughts this Christmas! Thank you so much for having the courage to share this piece of yourself with us!

  15. This is such a wonderful post, thanks for sharing so much of yourself with us! I'm sending hugs and all the best Christmas wishes your way, I hope you can create more beautiful memories this year together with your boyfriend. Those pictures are wonderful.
    My grandmother passed away two years ago and though that in no way compares to losing your mother, Christmas makes me miss her more, she always used to come to our house for dinner and those nights are among the best Christmas memories I have.

    This year I'll be spending time with my boyfriend's family and my own, relaxig, exchanging gifts and having lots and lots of dinner (I probably won't have to eat for a week after).

  16. TNBBC Super Mod says:

    You have such a great soul Jamie, and I want to thank you for sharing this with us. I know it's hard around the holiday – I lost my step father to cancer 8 years ago a few weeks before christmas and always find myself thinking of him this time of year.

    Be sappy, be sad, be happy, and reminisce – and know that your mom is looking down at you, loving the person you have become…

    All of the love that you have for your mom will be shared with the loved ones you still have around you this christmas!! Keep her memory close, and I'll be thinking about you!!!

  17. This is such a beautiful post. Your mom would be so proud of you and all that you have accomplished I'm sure.

    I hope you have a very merry Christmas with your family and boyfriend. Christmas is as much about building new memories and traditions as it is for remembering our love ones.

    Merry Christmas.

  18. The Golden Eagle says:

    This is a wonderful post. 🙂

    I hope you have a very merry Christmas!

  19. Jamie,
    I agree with all the statements that have been made before me. This must have been a tough topic to post. I'm glad you get to spend time with your Father, stepmother and little sister (all of which I am sure are truly proud). Best wishes and Happy Holidays to you, your family and your boyfriend.

  20. Thank you for posting this. I love the holidays but I'm also at the point where I'm starting to wish I didn't have to deal with my family. You made me realize that I need to get over my grudges and just enjoy the days I have because things can change tomorrow.

    Hoping you and your boyfriend have the best holiday possible!

  21. Library Gal says:

    Jamie, what a beautiful post. I'm thinking of you and your boyfriend. I echo the sentiments above and wish you and your family a wonderful christmas filled with memories that bring you comfort and warmth.

  22. Eleni @ La Femme Readers says:

    Oh Jamie, this post moved me. I am sure your mom is smiling down on you, you are a great person inside and out. I am so very sorry for your boyfriend's loss, I will pray for him and you. I hope you both have a happy and healthy holiday. Your blogging family loves you much! Always remember that. 🙂

  23. This post has tears me in eyes. I am so sorry for your losses. I think Jen said it fantastically. You are incredibly strong, and I'm definitely thinking of you and your boyfriend this year. And I do think your mom would be proud, especially of your awesome blog 🙂

    I hope you get to enjoy what time with family you do have, and maybe get the chance to make some new memories. You'll always have a very special place in the blogging family!

  24. Midnyte Reader says:

    I find something so strong and beautiful in this post. I find it remarkable that you have such an open heart to share this and to turn your heartbreak into something you can help your boyfriend with. I am so sorry you are missing people this Christmas and I get that. I think your message reached us all.

  25. I'm going to try and type a cohesive comment through the tears…you are such an amazing person Jamie and your bf is very lucky to have someone as strong and courageous as you. Losing family members is never easy and I can't imagine the pain you and your bf are going through. Stay strong, know that we all love you, and remember your mom and his dad are smiling on you always 🙂

  26. Jamie, thanks for sharing. You're such a strong person and even though I've only been following your blog for a few months, I can tell what a positive and sun-shiny person you are. I can only hope that I can be as strong as you when the time comes that I lose somebody. I can't even begin to imagine what holidays are like.

    Hope your Christmas was wonderful and full of joy, despite the sadness 🙁 And I hope you have a very Happy New Year!!

  27. The1stdaughter says:

    I'm just now jumping in, as I've been off for the holiday. Jamie, I'm so glad you shared your story with all of us. You've been an incredible addition to my blogging circle and someone I can truly call a friend. I hope the holiday turned out better than you had hoped. Sending you lots of hugs and my best wishes for a beautiful bright happy New Year!

  28. This post made me bawl!!! I, as most people, know what it's like to lose family members, but I can't even begin to imagine what it'd be like to lose my mom. It scares me to death. Anyways. I hope you had a wonderful Christmas!

  29. Ria- The Beaucoup Review book blog. says:

    This post is so sweet, I had tears in my eyes!
    It just shows how strong you are to actually write this.
    I really admire you and your blog and the pictures you put up are so cute!
    I love your blog and the way you make it so personal, it just draws so many people in wanting to read it.
    Have a Happy New Year!

  30. I'm ever so sorry for your loss. This is my second Christmas without my Dad…and you're right, being strong is really important. I hope your Christmas is as wonderful as it can be.

  31. This is my first year without my mom too. I sympathize with your boyfriend. It's terrible without your family, especially around the holidays. My mom died sunnedly and unexpected. It's hard but I am glad he has you at his side :). I hope you both have a great Christmas.

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