It’s almost here. I’ve been dreading it. I knew it was going to consume me with grief. But I have to live it. I have to feel it. In a year’s time it will probably hit me again or not, maybe a little easier. But for now I am trying really hard to keep the spirit of Christmas alive for my children, for my husband, for my grandad, for my mum and the rest of my family and most importantly for the lady who would dearly love to be here for it….my nana!
It’s been almost 6 months since I lost my nana. The sweetest lady I knew. The lady who taught me so much and loved me unconditionally. The lady who I could tell anything to. The lady I would both laugh and cry with during one phone conversation. I miss her soft touch, her beautiful kisses and her voice. I miss her so much, it hurts more than ever and at the moment I’m feeling fragile and stricken with grief all over again like I did the day I had to say goodbye.
As each day has passed since then, our lives have slowly been going back to normal. You get back into the routine of living and the days turn into months. For a while you start to smile again and enjoy the comforts of your friends and family. But I knew that this Christmas would be hard. I think it really hit me last week when I wrote out my Christmas list and I went to write down nana’s name and I remembered…I don’t have to buy a present for her anymore ;( The littlest things at the moment remind me of a memory of nana, which usually ends in tears and sadness. I find it hard to look at photos and where I was finding comfort in talking about nana, I can barely speak the word without wanting to howl! If I’m feeling this fragile at the moment, I can’t even imagine what my grandad and mum are feeling;(
Christmas has been celebrated religiously around family my whole life and nana use to create the best Christmas for us. She is the only person I know who had a fresh Christmas tree when we were little and she use to buy us the most beautiful gifts that we would love and cherish (I still have my cabbage patch doll she bought for me)! The matriarch of our family taught us how to cook a Christmas lunch that would feed an army and she taught us has to work hard…nana would always be the last one standing in the kitchen!
Over the past decade, it’s been so nice looking after nana and waiting on her on Christmas Day, just like she always did for us. But now, those days are over. We won’t get to celebrate another Christmas with our lady. For weeks now a part of me wishes I could close my eyes and live through this Christmas, but that’s not the answer. Moving forward is about experiencing these emotions. Christmas is about children, family, rejoicing in what we have. We may not have our nana with us anymore, but we will always have her spirit to guide us and her legacy that she left behind.
On the weekend we decorated our house. We put up our tree and covered our house with over 2000 lights. It is usually one of my favourite weekends of the year. But this year felt different. The kids were super excited and that’s what kept me going. I would walk away when I felt overwhelmed and teary and kept going when I felt ok enough to. I have to put on a brave face my children. They are sad that nana isn’t here anymore, but kids are so endearing when it comes to loss. Every night when we go outside to look at our lights, Sienna picks out the brightest star in the sky and says “nana is watching us!” Or she just yells out “hello nana!” 😉
As I sit here watching my precious babies eat their dessert while relishing in our beautiful lights, they will pull me through this fragile state. Christmas will come and we will shed tears, but we will smile when one of the kids says something adorable and we will laugh when someone says something funny. We owe it to the greatest women we know to embrace the festive season. Nana can’t enjoy Christmas and the great things that come with it, but we will do it for her. I can just see her saying “pick yourself up and have always
I will always have the most amazing memories of our last Christmas with nana, these memories will be cherished forever!