Endings are often difficult. As another year comes to a close, I look back on the many I have been through this year alone.
Sometimes they come as part of a plan, an inevitable chain of events. Sometimes they come with no warning and take your breath away. And sometimes, they are welcome after a long arduous path has found a dead end.
Regardless of which form they take, it is always impactful. Sometimes we dread what we know is coming and then by the time the moment arrives it seems almost anticlimactic. Worrying only served to drag out the pain before, and did nothing to shorten the loss after it happens.
Sometimes you cannot possibly be prepared enough and no matter what you try to ease the pain, it does not make a dent in your grief. Even the good endings have their own set of issues: Guilt, regret, apathy…
And there are also the endings that come and are ignored. Life continues on as before and we choose to act as if it does not matter. That somehow if we let it slide, things will magically change the eventual loss. Perhaps, it is only a partial loss or simply a change of status that will never go back to the way it was before. These endings are vague and can almost slide by unnoticed but for the niggling sadness that continues day after day as you wait for the dawning moment of realization.
Experiencing loss effects everyone differently. The holiday to season offers plenty of time for reflection. Memories of family and friends of days gone by. An ornament that reminds us of someone that is gone from our lives. A recipe that transports us to grandma’s kitchen. A tradition that has been passed to a new generation that will become a special memory for them someday when you are gone.
I lost my mother last month, her name was Joy. With the holiday season upon us I am constantly reminded of her in songs, decorations, and movies that proclaim, Joy to all! I am making the effort to make sure my family experiences as much of that joy as possible as they too deal with the loss.
As I look to 2018, I know that I will, as we all do, continue to experience loss, but I also know, that there will be much joy and many new beginnings just around the corner. Hope is the cornerstone of life that keeps us searching, propels us forward. The world is struggling to find its way right now and trouble seems to be on everyone’s doorstep, but we mustn’t lose hope.
With Christmas comes a slow, warm melancholy that allows us to feel sad. As the snow falls softly outside my window I am reminded of the quiet of winter. A candle burns in the window lighting the way home and the twinkling lights on the tree remind me that there is still magic out there, you just have to believe. Well, I still believe.
I wish for you a holiday season filled with Joy and magic and a happy, healthy New Year full of incredible new beginnings.