We made it through Thanksgiving, mostly by cancelling the entire holiday.
In fact, we had a remarkably good time all things considered.
When I woke up I had a few minutes of misery to myself, but the kids and I had plans laid out to celebrate on our own terms.
We dubbed the day ‘No-Effs-Given’ with the intention of going out and doing whatever we’d like.
My office never closes. We have people onsite 365 days a year, so the kids and I decided to go hang out with them at work and share a meal with them. This had the added benefit of lots of time to play with the office dogs.
Then it was off to the movies to see Ralph Breaks the Internet. It’s a touching movie and very funny in places. We enjoyed it, even if it made me feel even more insecure regarding my issues of relying on other people for my happiness (watch the movie, you’ll see what I mean).
We were planning to get Chinese next but noticed the mall was open so we went on an unplanned and super expensive shopping spree. Retail therapy is still therapy, right?
Then Chinese food. We were stuffed. So of course it made sense to get stuff to make sundaes.
We had left the house around 11am and got home at about 8pm. It was a good time. We put a little clip together to share our day.
But when we got home everyone dispersed. We all left for our individual rooms and spent the evening alone. No one said anything but I’m sure it was the same. Absence again.
Then today got here. I don’t know why I hadn’t given it more thought previously.
Thanksgiving is a holiday. But the day after Thanksgiving is Tradition Day.
We’ve always spent the Friday after getting ready for Christmas.
First, the annual tree killing. Then lunch. When we get home I drag all the decorations out of storage and we spend the evening transforming the house into a Christmas wonderland. Her inside, me outside. She’d bring me coffee (usually with a little whiskey) to warm me up during the hours long process. I hated decorating outside, but she wanted it so I did it for her.
We’d always argue about the tree when I tried to get it straight in the stand.
Everyone would get a gift, an ornament to put on the tree.
Leftovers for dinner, a holiday movie.
The kids would be ushered off to bed and Christine and I would sit together in a dark living room lit only by the tree, decorations and the glow of the fire.
We tried to do it this year. We went and got a tree and had lunch.
T, E and I went to a trampoline place with a friend and jumped for awhile. That was the high point of the game.
I finally put the tree up around 7 tonight. We just wrapped some lights around it and called it good. I don’t know if we’ll pull out the ornaments. I don’t care to.
Throughout the entire day I tried to move forward. Step, step, step, step.
How many people cry at tree farms? What the hell?
I want this season to end. I just want to be out the other side.
“Her absence is like the sky, spread over everything”
I’m so tired of hurting, of being blindsided by days like today.
I miss her. I miss her so much.
4 thoughts on “Tradition Day”
Sending hugs. The holidays are hell.
Hugs. Holidays in families that have experienced trauma of any kind suck, but I’m glad you were at least able to create “No Effs Given” day.
Every time I read one of your blog entries I want to say something, I want to reach out.. Every time I pull back, feeling as if anything that I might offer to you is just platitudes, and I never like platitudes myself; they always seem so empty and they don’t really make anything better. I don’t think it will get better, it will just get different. I feel so many things as I read your entries and peer into your raw soul. Nothing you are doing is easy, but you are doing it. Taking each milasecond at a time and learning from each previous step and perceived misstep as you go. Everyone has their own journey, and I know that often people find solace in the experiences of others, I hope that you find solace in all that you do, all that you share and that it all continues to help you.
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Thanks Sara. The cost of love is grief. I’m having a hard time remembering that feeling like this now is worth it because it meant I had so much love before. I’m hoping that part becomes easier.