In truth, I believe the words “It will get easier” are meant to encourage us as we prepare for joyous family gatherings with the knowledge there will be an empty spot both in the celebration and our hearts. I don’t believe it gets easier. Each holiday without my sister is just as painful. I will probably never get used to her absence. BUT I do look forward to the holidays and making new memories with my family, friends, and neighbors.
Holidays don’t get easier but they do become welcomed, festive, and joyous occasions again. In my experience, there isn’t one that stands out as better, or easier than the one before. We celebrated our 18th Christmas without Heidi less than two weeks ago. This Christmas wasn’t any easier than the first one without her yet the joy and laughter in the house was far greater than it was on that first Christmas. We still miss Heidi’s laughter, jokes, and holiday hugs.
I believe holidays are a stop on the roller coaster of life without someone close to you. In the days, sometimes weeks or months leading up to the holiday one’s heart races with anticipation. Our car slowly climbs the steep hill. What will this year be like? Will they find her before the holiday? How can we still remember __?__ this year without stealing the joy and celebration of the holiday? Then the holiday comes with the energy and speed of the rollercoaster jetting down the anticipated decline. Adrenaline, laughter, tears, and thankfulness come over you as the car hits the plateau and flattens out for a bit.
As with any roller coaster, and grief, another hill is bound to come. I’m thankful for my relationship with Jesus, “I can do all things through Christ, who strengthens me.” Christmas eighteen years wasn’t any easier to celebrate without Heidi at my side yet the joy of Christ’s birth and the HOPE we have for the future – made the holiday a new, joyous, and memorable holiday. Heidi will never be forgotten. Learn how a few small gifts keep Heidi’s memory and the joy of Christmas moving forward in our family over the next few days.
Have HOPE, holidays
might not get easier
yet they do get BETTER!