Tonight we are getting to see The 14th Annual Rough Shop Holiday Extravaganza: Night 2, which is one of my very favorite holiday things to do each year.
As I've mentioned before, I'm currently learning that the holidays are a tough time for grief because there are so many repeating events and themes that make it impossible to forget what you were doing the year before, and well, a year ago we were a mere few weeks out from ending our very wanted pregnancy at 22 weeks. My hormones alone were a disaster. Tonight's concert is setting up to be a particularly acute memory - it was the first time we saw some friends last year after losing Grace, having to share the news to some that didn't yet know. We're eating dinner at the same place with the same friend before the show. I didn't even realize how similar it was until just a few minutes ago.
I'm glad to be in a generally more stable, calmer place this year. I'm sadder in general, and angrier (which I have mixed feelings on), but also more peaceful and noticeably more capable of feelings joy at this point too.
To anyone else reliving hard experiences and memories with every holiday decoration and Christmas song (I especially remember singing along to 'It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year' last year while driving all over my therapist's parking lot in search of a spot, but adding expletives and revisions to the song), I validate you and am with you. I'm especially holding you close in thought and care when when you're searching for a quiet, private space to have a much needed cry, or wanting to blurt out to everyone that no, it Christmas ISN'T holly and jolly, damnit. I hope you're with me in feeling like you're having to hold it all together by a thread a little less than you've had to in the past, and it's ok if you don't, too (though it's easier for me to say that other people that to myself). Hopefully if you're feeling a little better, you're feeling less guilty about that than I am. That's the thing about grief - everyone experiences it, yet it still feels so isolating and confusing. I don't know why that is, but I can say for sure that you're not alone, and thanks to the love of my friends and family, I know I'm not either.