christmas #2 without Jarronn has come and gone. and we all managed through it. there really is something to getting through "the firsts," and i'm glad that we've done that and made it through half of our "seconds" as well. but the big days and holidays aren't completely easy either. they still come with moments of longing. and with unspoken--yet understood--words between the family. and the underlying knowledge that we're trying to make the best of what we have.
christmas dinner was small and held at my house. this was a big improvement from last year when i neglected to put up a single holiday decoration or feel an ounce of christmas cheer. and i was thankful for the improvement in my attitude. i cooked. did some decorating. and even baked my christmas cookies (something Jarronn loved).
most of the day was fantastic -- enjoying the time with my parents and Jarronn's immediate family. exchanging beautiful and thoughtful gifts. watching football and taking post-meal naps on the couch. we went through old photos and snapped some new ones.
the biggest snag came with me cooking a leg of lamb that didn't seem to be turning out as well as i had hoped. when i cook for other people, i take it pretty seriously. so the thought of christmas dinner turning into a bust had me stressed. it also had me missing how Jarronn loved cooking the entire meal for thanksgiving and christmas dinners. filling his shoes can sometimes be really, really tough.
and that, of course, applies to more than just food prep. there's the friend shoes. the sibling shoes. the cousin shoes. the godparent shoes. and the child shoes. all big. all hard to fill. none really possibly to fill. but i wish i could. i really, really wish i could.
i am, however, thankful for what i can do. bring our families together. carry on his memory. find new joys in life. and prayerfully make it through the rest of "the seconds," "the thirds," "the fourths," and so on.
i pray you and yours had a merry christmas! and Jarronn would want me to wish you a happy kwanzaa too!