You don't see it coming. There is no warning. It just hits you.
This time of the year it comes at you full force.
It could be the smell of a fresh tree or the laugh of children.
Maybe it's cooking a family recipe or the change in weather.
Whatever might trigger it, you can never be sure. It just hits you.
One minute you are laughing and singing your favorite song.
Then, it just hits you and you are overcome with immense sadness.
As much as you want to be ok, you want to smile and decorate the tree, you can't.
Because it just hits you and all you want to do is cry.
Cry at everything that is different. Cry because of everything missing.
You never know when it's coming.
It just hits you.
The holidays are a bittersweet time for many people that deal with the loss of a loved one. It doesn't matter how long it's been, it's still hard.
This is my 6th Christmas without my mom and I still have moments where all I want is for her to be here singing Rockin Around the Christmas Tree with me. Sometimes they are expected moments of sadness. Putting up the tree, the shiny garland I wrapped around the staircase that she hated. But then there are moments that are unexpected. That it just hits me.
A few weeks ago, she appeared in my dreams. It was just when I started my new job and she was there for my baby shower, of all things (Not pregnant, even a little bit.) She was laughing and hugging me. That was a hard day when I woke up. I wanted that hug here. I wanted to hear her laugh again. That's what we might call a sad day. A day where it just hit me.
Then, there was yesterday. As I was cleaning out my car, I came across this.This small backpack.
It was tucked under my trunk blanket, probably left behind from the move...4 months ago...As I pull it out, right there, it just hit me. This was the very last Christmas present my mom ever gave me. Since she had bronchitis that Christmas she didn't get to the store and shop so instead gave me this bag she had gotten from Yves Roche as a free gift and wrapped money inside it. When I opened it, I threw up the money and made my mom laugh. One of those memories I will never forget.
IF you are experiencing this, this Holiday season, know you are not alone. Know that this is the path of grief. It never has an ending. It's ok to be sad, it's ok to still be grieving no matter how long its been. But also know, it's ok to laugh a little more and smile a little more than the last holiday season. Because just as those sad moments hit, know that those moments of pure happiness will hit you too. And those moments, will be the best comfort you could ask for.