Author Topic: First Christmas  (Read 10244 times)

Gary1967

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First Christmas
« on: December 02, 2009, 06:20:52 PM »
Well its been 5 weeks since my lovely wife Carla has died. Now of course Christmas is here. We would always go to my family where we had drawn names and exchanged gifts. We would also eat a large meal and play games. This year I have told my family that I will not be attending Christmas dinner. This was a great time with my wife and I just cant do this alone. I feel like a third wheel when I show up for family events. It is like everybody has to be extra nice to poor lil Gary that has no family. I am thinking about just getting in my car and driving out of state for the holiday. I am sorry I cant be with my family, but this is a terrible time. I am too stubborn to be talked into anything, so everyone will let me be. I dont know what everyone else did during their first holidays and I would like to hear how they felt on their first one.
Thanks for everyone time....Gary
PS.. I miss my loving wife Carla..Oct 25 ,2009

Michelle C

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Re: First Christmas
« Reply #1 on: December 02, 2009, 07:19:34 PM »
Gary...
This is my first christmas without Clarence...
and I am going to force myself to spend the day with my family.. I am being selfish but i need their support through this difficult time..  I am going to feed off of their happiness...They still love me and they worry about me.. and I am sure ur family feels the same.. There will be lots of tears but in the end I think that I need to get out.. U think about it.. It would do u some good to get out and be around ppl that love u...

Luvinmike

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Re: First Christmas
« Reply #2 on: December 02, 2009, 08:26:23 PM »
Dear (((Gary ))and (((Michelle)));
I am sending you every ounce of strength I have. I am so sorry. I am doing this for the second year. I hope you will take things one day, hour, sometimes breath at a time. Keep moving with exercise, it is helpful to me to walk and cry sometimes.
The anticipating to me is worse than the special dates. I have been managing that anticipation by only doing what I want, including grieving.
It is important to care for yourself in this. Our love for our best friends and partners never dies. Lighting a candle for us all and wishing you a moment of peace. You can do this.
Terri

greengirl2

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Re: First Christmas
« Reply #3 on: December 02, 2009, 10:58:44 PM »
Gary,
 I am so sorry for your loss.
My first Christmas without my Dad was summed up by my mom saying "This is the worst Christmas ever".
At the time she was right. We forced ourselves to hang out with family, but didn't really speak of my Dad much. I was in a state of both denial and shock at that point. He had just died on Dec.18th 2008.
This will be my second, but feels more like a first.
I think my mom was in a state of shock and just exhaustion from the months of caring for my Dad.

Everything hurt for months. But the pain slowly gets farther and farther apart.
I can go days without crying.

I say do what you need to do. If it is to drive away, then drive.
Your gut will tell you what you need. If you want to go back to family I am sure they will accept you with open arms.

greengirl

mousewife

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Re: First Christmas
« Reply #4 on: December 03, 2009, 08:14:59 PM »
Gary,

I am sorry for what you are going through.  In answer to your questions, my first Christmas without my husband was kind of surreal.  I was not sure that I wanted to do any of the usual things I did for Christmas.  But as it got closer, I chose to go ahead and do most of the decorating that I would have done.  I felt that I would be comforted by the tree and lights once they were done.  I was, but it was very painful to put on ornaments that we had picked out together, and purchase one in his memory and hang it on the tree.  I have no family to be with but my elderly mother, so we just did the best we could.  It is devastating, but, we have to go through it to get to the other side, where we can feel better.

It is very hard when the death is so near to a major holiday.

This is my third Christmas without my sweetie, and it is much easier than the last two.  I have no choice but to accept that everything is forrever changed, but I can still enjoy many things about the holiday.

I didn't feel like being around a lot of people either.  I think you have to decide what will be the least upsetting for you. 

Peace and Healing,
mousewife

bluegrass1965

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Re: First Christmas
« Reply #5 on: December 03, 2009, 09:34:39 PM »
Hi Gary,
I agree with mousewife.....do what feels right.  If you feel like taking a trip would be helpful, then go. There would definitely be an anonymity (sp?) to it that would be very liberating....I should probably take one myself. 

My first holiday without my dad is coming up, but I think the loss of a parent would be very different from the loss of a spouse....so I don't know that any of my thoughts about dad would be helpful to you.  In general it has helped me to avoid anyplace where holiday stuff is really overwhelming, such as the mall. I have also turned down invitations, not with a huge explanation, just with a firm but polite "No, Thank you."

I kind of feel like this Christmas, I'm Switzerland.  I'll just sit and be totally neutral, and focus on making it through the day. Everyone else can celebrate, and I'll just wait patiently until it's over.

Whatever you decide, be good to yourself. Do whatever it is that YOU need.


tsurandy

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Re: First Christmas
« Reply #6 on: December 04, 2009, 12:24:56 AM »
Gary, I also feel that you have to decide for yourself what feels right.  The first Christmas after losing my Mama, I spent with my sister, one brother and his family.  We went ahead with the regular family traditions, but I knew in my heart that is what she would have wanted us to do.  I can say the day was certainly sad, but being with family helped!  This year may not be much better, but I did decorate the house on the inside which I did not do last year.   I guess I was blessed because I got to talk to Mama before she passed and she told me she wanted for me to continue on my life journey, to do good, and be happy, and let me tell you that with my grief that has been very hard to do.  I will pray for you, Michelle, and all the others in the world who are experiencing the loss of a loved one.   I am not sure Christmas will ever be a truly happy time for any of us, but I feel that keeping tradition brings me comfort.
Peggy's Boy

georgiapeaches

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Re: First Christmas
« Reply #7 on: December 06, 2009, 12:25:20 PM »
Hi Gary,
I am so sorry for your loss, I lost my husband and my mom, and Christmas has been very hard on my and my kids. I have 3 teens. Honestly no matter what we do I  dont think it will ever be the same, this year I invited one of my daughters friends over her mom just lost her mom so she is at a loss, so together maybe we can make something out of the day and my other friend is going through a very rough divorce, so we are getting together also.
do what you think will ease your pain alittle. whatever it is. Prayers to you and your family. All the best.

Georgia.
MOM                        JOHNNY
 

erinatkins

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Re: First Christmas
« Reply #8 on: December 12, 2009, 04:09:46 PM »
This is really hitting home. My husband died in April and this is the first year i dont even feel like shopping. Then in September a man ran a red light and I fractured 3 places in pelvis and 3 ribs. I was in ICU - step down unit and then rehab. I am making progress but part of me wishes I could just give up. Thanksgiving didn't seem like Thanksgiving and what do I really have to be happy about?

georgiapeaches

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Re: First Christmas
« Reply #9 on: December 12, 2009, 05:03:01 PM »
Dear Erin,
I am so sorry your in such pain. I know how badly you must feel, thats a awful thing to have to go through and then the holidays on top of it. sometimes I feel like giving up but thats not what my husband or my mom or dad would have wanted for me, and my kids they need me as I am sure you are needed and loved. The holidays are hard but they pass and then we work our way to other things, my husband died in April of 08 then my mom passed Nov 09 and its been really hard on me but even harder on my kids, so please Erin dont give up, we are all here to help you, take one day at a time, and come back here anytime you need to talk. I hope you feel better.

georgia.
MOM                        JOHNNY
 

laurenE

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Re: First Christmas
« Reply #10 on: December 12, 2009, 05:06:40 PM »
This will be my 7th (or is it 8th??)  holiday without my mom.  My dad died 30 yrs ago.    

The first 2 or 3 holidays I planned trips  in early Dec to have something else to look forward to.  It was a great excuse to get away and it helped make Chrismtas day more bearable.   Although I would have loved to have gone far far away,   I was only able to take short weekend get aways.  And that worked just fine.  

The thought and anticipation of Christmas and Thanksgiving without the loved one is worse than how  the actual day turned out,  for me.   Maybe it will be for you as well.  

Perhaps you can plan a shorter visit with your family.  Eat out someplace on Christmas day, then show up later for an hour or two.  That way you can be surrounded by those who love you (which is what we all need when we are hurting so deeply).    One of my favorite things to do to escape life is to go to a movie alone.  Maybe you could check out a new movie on Christmas day.

whatever you do,  I hope you get through it.  
let us know how it goes.

lauren

erinatkins

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Re: First Christmas
« Reply #11 on: December 12, 2009, 05:57:48 PM »
I wish I felt differently right now. Both my parents are dead - my dad in January then my husband in April - then my car accident. I just feel physical and emotional pain right now. I have been crying the last few hours - wanting but not wanting to call my sisters. I know they don't understand how i feel. I also think at times my daughter would be better off without me. She is pushing me away right now. I just feel alone. How am I  suppose to act like I am not falling apart? I am not strong enough right now to deal with all this.

Luvinmike

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Re: First Christmas
« Reply #12 on: December 13, 2009, 05:12:57 AM »
Dear Erin;
My heart goes out to you in your present situation and always in your grief. I am so sorry to hear of your accident, that is so much additional stress and pain.

 I guess, this may be one of those times to breathe and survive one breath, minute, hour at a time. I hope you will try telling your sisters' how you feel, so that they will know. Although it does not seem possible sometimes, things always change- so you will feel differently than you do now. Maybe as your physical healing occurs your emotional strength will build.
Are you able to ask your doctor for some help? I have a teenage daughter who can be moody, I have learned in the middle of some mother /daughter arguments to just say,"We are all sad and missing Dad right now, it will not help to be lashing out at each other. We can talk about things without getting mean." It seems to help her remember that maybe she is being angry and that it might really be because of our losses. I am wishing you every moment of peace possible as you recover from a serious accident and as you learn to live with this grief. We are here to listen. Hope you keep us posted on how you are doing.

Thinking of you also Gary- This is so hard, sending you strength to do what you have to do each day while missing your partner, so sorry.

Sincerely,
Terri

MISSINGYOU

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Re: First Christmas
« Reply #13 on: December 13, 2009, 07:04:55 AM »
Christmas is so difficult anyway,the stress of shopping,fighting people and attempting to make merry when there are financial pressures ect.....This is my first Christmas without my father. I lost my favorite Aunt 6 weeks ago and my husband and are not doing well and negotiating terms in case we break up and divorce. Merry Stinkin Christmas. I am trying very hard to stay up beat for the girls. I keep thinking if I put the seat bealt on tight enough I will get through it all. In addition to this, my husband is severly depressed over his two adult children who have acccused him of some awful things that he could never consider and won't talk to him or lethim see his granddaughter. He is lashing out at the world right now. Dad always said the only thing constant in life is change. Im waiting for the change.

Elizabeth

bluegrass1965

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Re: First Christmas
« Reply #14 on: December 13, 2009, 08:53:56 AM »
Lauren said :The thought and anticipation of Christmas and Thanksgiving without the loved one is worse than how  the actual day turned out,  for me.

That was definitely the case with Thanksgiving for me.  I was almost sick the day before dreading having to talk to everyone and even hear about dad.  The actual day had so much activity (and lots of little kids), there was plenty of distraction.  At one point after dinner there was a niece playing violin, a football game on really loud with the guys yelling, AND conversations in the kitchen and dining room. and I found myself thinking, well, if dad *were* here he'd be totally annoyed at the noise!

Christmas will be at my mom and dad's with a very small family group, not nearly as busy, so that may be harder.  I still have a few kids to get things for but I shop early on weekdays so I don't have to deal with the crowds and traffic.  If the kids don't have an evening activity, by 5pm I try to be home holding a cup of tea and reading.

We can all make it through this if we keep posting for support.  I will check the boards every day Christmas week for sure to see if anyone needs a comforting word.

bluegrass