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Old 12-03-2013, 11:54 PM
 
Location: 900 miles from my home in 80814
4,669 posts, read 6,742,826 times
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After we got back from Colorado last Sunday, having had a beautiful and fun Thanksgiving, my son carried up all my Christmas decorations and tree from the garage. For the first time in my life, I'm decorating the house, and putting up the tree by myself. It has been really hard. Before, we as parents, with kids at home, made it a party to decorate the house and tree. As the kids moved on, we still made a party of it. After Bob died, and Andrew still lived here, it was a more subdued, bittersweet thing to decorate the tree, but still a family activity. Now, Andrew's in his own place...his personal ornaments are with him, he found a 3' pre-lit brand new tree at Goodwill for $2.99, and we're both now embarking on new traditions that are our own. I decorated the house, put the tree together (pre-lit fake tree) and decorated it, but so much of the love and joy was gone. It was just me, no one to share it with. In the four years since Bob died, this is the first time I've decorated the house and put up the tree all alone. If my sister-in-law and hubby weren't coming for Christmas, I'd wonder why I'm doing this.
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Old 12-04-2013, 05:54 AM
 
Location: Wherever I happen to be at the moment
1,229 posts, read 1,087,703 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marcy1210 View Post
After we got back from Colorado last Sunday, having had a beautiful and fun Thanksgiving, my son carried up all my Christmas decorations and tree from the garage. For the first time in my life, I'm decorating the house, and putting up the tree by myself. It has been really hard. Before, we as parents, with kids at home, made it a party to decorate the house and tree. As the kids moved on, we still made a party of it. After Bob died, and Andrew still lived here, it was a more subdued, bittersweet thing to decorate the tree, but still a family activity. Now, Andrew's in his own place...his personal ornaments are with him, he found a 3' pre-lit brand new tree at Goodwill for $2.99, and we're both now embarking on new traditions that are our own. I decorated the house, put the tree together (pre-lit fake tree) and decorated it, but so much of the love and joy was gone. It was just me, no one to share it with. In the four years since Bob died, this is the first time I've decorated the house and put up the tree all alone. If my sister-in-law and hubby weren't coming for Christmas, I'd wonder why I'm doing this.
Good for you, Marcy. Why? Perhaps revisiting happy memories of Christmases past. Perhaps just to add some color, light and beauty to your home to help cheer up and sustain you. Maybe just something to share with visitors during the Christmas season.

Do the whys really matter if you take pleasure and comfort in having some decorations?

Or in a word, with thanks to Fiddler on the Roof, Tradition!

I hope you have a truly Merry Christmas!
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Old 12-04-2013, 07:53 AM
 
Location: NoVa
18,434 posts, read 28,537,591 times
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Marcy, my mom passed away on Christmas Eve of 2000, and after that, I had a very hard time with Christmas at all, but my children were young. I guess I did what they call "fake it to make it." After a few years, it wasn't as bad. I still had the grief which was heavier at that time, and around Thanksgiving as well.

Christmas was never my holiday, but Thanksgiving was always our family's big day. I think those two months combined had to be the most dreaded times for me for several years because both of my parents were gone. The siblings and I and our families continues to get together and we always looked at old pictures and reminisced and my sister and I always ended up with tears in our eyes.

This year and also 2011 were great years for me. No depression during those months. Somehow 2012 wasn't. I thought of my parents, and I smiled. My dads bday was the other day but it wasn't somber as it usually is.

I know everyones grief isn't the same but I can tell you what was different in my life. I was happy. My life had changed and I was finally happy in it. Once that happened, I was able to endure those months happily and think back on my parents and smile. I was happy in 2012, but something had to be different. I actually think I was sad because my parents never got to see me happy in my adult life.

Right now I can't wait to get the decorations up. I love decorating and I love Christmas music, and I wear antlers! I wish some of us could have been there to help you and lend you some happiness and a smile....a few hugs too!

I truly believe that how you are in your life directly relates to how your grief is at that moment. Now that is just me, others may feel differently. I am not here that often, so I do not know how long Bob has been gone. (I am very sorry for your loss) I think you are probably feeling more loss as your children are moving on. I felt that as well, when my children ended up living with their dad. Those were the times when my grief got even heavier.

If I were near, I would give you a hug...and some coffee! Merry Christmas.
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Old 12-04-2013, 08:10 AM
 
Location: Long Neck,De
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I might put a couple of store bought decorations around for the company. I don't believe I would bother to decorate just for me.
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Old 12-04-2013, 08:12 AM
 
Location: Long Neck,De
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If I were alone I don't believe I would bother to decorate. Maybe a few store bought decorations for visitors but my heart would not be in it.
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Old 12-04-2013, 10:04 AM
 
Location: SWFL
21,439 posts, read 18,155,050 times
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I'm not bothering to decorate anymore. I don't feel that the modern version of Christmas is relevant in my life anymore. ie: presents, Santa Claus, etc. I used to be a big decorator for family and friends (and myself) but since there is no more family, I'm choosing to not decorate. I'm not being Scrooge either. I wish everyone Merry Christmas or Happy Holiday. Just not into decorating.

Marcy, I would have loved to have helped you.
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Old 12-04-2013, 10:23 AM
 
399 posts, read 510,618 times
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I don't know if you are christian or not, but I recently learned the lights on your tree represent the light of Jesus. That is, darkness is the bad and evil, light is the love and good things in life. A little light in your house is a good thing for you. Try to envision yourself as a conductor of His light, lighting your tree and bringing good to others. I hope this helps.
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Old 12-04-2013, 10:49 AM
 
2,432 posts, read 3,265,294 times
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You may want to create some new traditions. If you belong to a church and enjoy decorating you could volunteer to help with the seasonal decorations. You could also volunteer to decorate or serve meals at a homeless shelter or soup kitchen. Now is a good time to find joy in new traditions. You will always have the good memories of past Christmases to join the new ones you will be creating.
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Old 12-04-2013, 10:53 AM
 
Location: North Pinellas
627 posts, read 1,143,205 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by purplepeach View Post
I don't know if you are christian or not, but I recently learned the lights on your tree represent the light of Jesus. That is, darkness is the bad and evil, light is the love and good things in life. A little light in your house is a good thing for you. Try to envision yourself as a conductor of His light, lighting your tree and bringing good to others. I hope this helps.
What a beautiful sentiment!! OP- Dont think of it as decorating for yourself, because you are never alone. Bob is with you in spirit and Andrew is with you in thought. There is everything right with continuing to decorate for your family regardless if they are actually physically there with you. Put on some Christmas music, talk to them like you used to when they were there with you, enjoy the tradition because it is something you guys always enjoyed together. Keep doing it because it is a happy memory you shared...not doing it will only sadden you! Hang in there and big hugs to you!!
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Old 12-04-2013, 07:17 PM
 
1,627 posts, read 2,638,204 times
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Marcy, it is so difficult for most of us around this time of year, we have so many fond memories. Please know we understand and it is hard to do everything by ourselves. I am so happy you won't be spending Christmas alone, you will have your family with you.

I am not putting up my Christmas tree for two years in a row. First of all, it weighs a ton, I need help, second of all, it is just me and I think I would not do well because my husband loved the Christmas tree. All our married life, we did not have a Christmas tree, he would not allow it. When he came down with Alzheimer's he had forgotten he did not like Christmas trees. So, I went out and bought a artificial and he just loved it. It has its own lights. I can put it up in seconds. I made our house festive. He had a smile on his face when I decorated it. Sure made me happy to see him happy.

This Christmas Eve I plan to go to Laughlin, my husband and I spent many years during the holidays there and I will meet CA for the first time. I haven't felt this much life in me for years. We will go out to eat to a nice restaurant and take in a movie. I am so happy.

Marcy, Tam, CA, you embraced me from the start and I felt nurtured and so I thank you so much.

Wishing you all Happy Holidays.
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