On this final day of 2019, I am adjusting to the sudden solitude and so very grateful for my dear ones. We all gathered here once again for another festive family Christmas celebration, still missing David like crazy, but glad to be together.
Chelsea and Brian and baby Beckett live nearby, so I see them throughout the year, but except for a few Chelsea and Beckett overnights, they didn’t stay here during the holidays like the others. Still, they were here Christmas Day.
Here’s Beckett wondering why a stuffed animal is singing to him and flapping its ears . . .
Brittany brought her boyfriend Andy, who kindly postponed his family Christmas to join ours. He was a great sport in this house full of women. He played games, worked jigsaw puzzles, helped Felicity learn to fly her mini-drone, and cooked and cleaned as much as any of us. Andy’s a fun guy so it was tough to get him to quit hamming it up so I could get a normal photo, but he makes Brittany smile, and I love that!
They hit the road early Sunday morning to drive down to Albuquerque to celebrate Andy’s delayed family Christmas and New Year’s Eve. Fortunately they forgot about ten things, so I’ll get to see them again soon.
Courtney was queen of travel this year, even more than Brittany and Andy. She flew out here on the 22nd and back home Christmas night, just to turn around and drive back with Bailey and Felicity on the 26th. It was a lot, but we weren’t about to leave her alone on Christmas or deprive any of us the comfort of togetherness on the 27th, so she did what she had to do. I made them pose for a photo before I’d let them go Monday afternoon.
I waved goodbye and the house was suddenly VERY quiet. I remember David and I would always say to each other, “Well, back to you and me again,” and we’d have a glass of wine and talk about all the fun of the past few days. He’s been gone now two years, and I still don’t know what to do with myself in those moments.
Two years. Time is such a weird thing. It flashes by at the speed of light when we’d rather it stop and drags when we want it to hurry up. David is beyond time now, and here I am knowing only that two years have gone by and grief is not done with me yet.
But there will be other family times. I wrote a poem in November called “Magic Words” that I think sums it up. The poem starts with a long litany of the chores and chaos that are part of hosting a crowd over the holidays. You probably know what that’s like, so we’ll skip to the last stanza:
. . . I will say thank you again, once the house is empty and quiet
and the extra shoes and coats,
the kids, the crafts, the snacks,
the phones, the tablets, the chargers,
the dogs, their leashes and dishes, their crates and treats,
have all been packed up and taken away.
I will call all three and say thank you so very much for coming,
for being my dear ones, my family,
for crashing into my silent aloneness
with your exuberant, irrepressible, gloriously loud life.
from “Magic Words” by Sunny Bridge – November 2019
Wishing you a 2020 with lots of warm, wonderful times with your dear ones!