Courage at Twilight: Christmas Bittersweet

My thoughts and feelings on Christmas are bittersweet.  Since divorcing seven Christmases ago, the season brings sadness and uncertainty and a nagging sense of failure, along with the traditional excitement and joy and love.  I ruminate on knotty questions: Do I pull my children away from their mother? Will their mother pull our children away from me? How do I plan? What activities do I undertake? How do I think about gifts and meals and parties?  My seven children are mostly grown and gone, but orbit back frequently.  They are my life’s joy.  At Hannah’s holiday choir concert with the Millennial Choirs and Orchestra, six of my seven children were present, with their spouses and granddaughter Lila, even Caleb and Edie on the night before their wedding.  I am grateful for such times—they become joyful memories.  The children’s mother and I are peaceable, both devoted to the success and happiness of our children.  We have found ways to share the Christmas celebration together, to not pull the children apart, but to give them the best broken-family experience we know how.  “Broken family” is the 20th Century’s nomenclature for our family status, but I loathe the label.  We are still a family, and there is nothing broken about us, just different, a bit challenging, like in all families.  We are doing our very best for the family, for the children.  So, I try to set sadness aside, and work to find ways to give and to enrich, to find ways to remember Jesus, our loving Savior and Redeemer, who gave us the example of giving and forgiving.  I look for ways to celebrate Christmas.  So, I watched the children open their gifts, enjoyed the traditional strawberry waffles, talked and plunked the guitar, and played card games and board games and laughed.  And Hannah affirmed in a letter, “I love you so very much Daddy!  I am so blessed to have you as my father.”  Ways to celebrate Christmas.

 

After Hannah’s Christmas concert.

 

My children, with Mom and Dad.

2 thoughts on “Courage at Twilight: Christmas Bittersweet

Leave a Reply to Patricia Ann Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s