Because sometimes us adults need a reminder that love can blind darkness, that truly, TRULY good people walk this crazy earth and that Christmas Magic will always exist within each and every one of us…
From me, to you, Merry Christmas, my friends, and the happiest of new beginnings, new experiences and new years, but same old bad ass and wonderful you, in 2018.
December 19, 2013 – My first Christmas after the death of Lilee-Jean.
Everyone says it will take time. Time to become a part of normal society, time to be able to work, time to be able to look forward. But when you need to pay rent, buy groceries and all the other necessities, time might be what you need but it is the last thing that you have. I started working about a month ago, and although I have the most amazing people surrounding me there, the transition has been difficult. Guilt, sadness and confusion are Equally as physically draining as emotionally, But I don’t have a choice. If I want to keep the home I built for Lilee, the only home she really ever knew as hers I need to pay the bills. My landlords, who are practically family now, even went as far as to lower rent to make it easier for me to stay here. So I worked. But as December approached, my “days off” consisted of recovering. I was losing track of my housekeeping and grocery shopping. I was too exhausted to do anything and had to make the difficult decision to take an extra day off a week. Financially, Not the best decision, but I needed more time to be able to recover and still do the things that need to be done. And then December came, and finances became the last thing on my mind. December 5th was Lilee-Jean’s would-be 3rd birthday. The age she will never turn. My close family and friends stood outside in the freezing cold night, surrounded by grass for miles, and attempted to release some lanterns. It didn’t go quite as planned, but there was a lot of laughter, the best company and we even managed to watch as two lanterns drifted across the night sky and disappeared into the darkness. Then there was the 6th. It’s always a difficult day, but with her birthday just one day prior, and Christmas approaching I started to sink lower and lower into the darkness. I am a mother without a child. I wake up every day to phantom cries, or laughter. To the sound of her opening her bedroom door to come wish me good morning. I lay in bed wrapped up in her favourite blanket and I swear I can feel her forehead touching mine, like it always did so she could fall asleep. But when I open my eyes I’m alone and she’s still gone. How could I even think about celebrating Christmas? Going through all the traditions that I only had two years to introduce to Lilee. How could I watch as people run chaotically throughout malls making big deals of little unimportant things, yelling at their children, and completely taking the season for granted. And on the opposite side, watch beautiful little families taking in the Christmas festivities, watching the joy and love on the mothers and fathers faces, and the awe in the eyes of the little ones. Our Christmas in August was my Christmas. From the moment the date was decided, I began all the Christmas traditions with Lil, putting out stockings, watching the grinch and the old rudolf. We baked cookies and sang Christmas carols, and we even had our big family dinner on Christmas Eve which included Santa, and of course, snow. Every ounce of the seasons magic was coursing through our veins as we woke up Christmas morning and I watched as Lilee registered that Santa came. It was warm from the sun, and from love, the lights were dim and Christmas had truly come in August. So as December begins, my heart aches for my daughter, our Christmas, our traditions, our love. I accepted the season, as it’s everywhere, but I chose to not celebrate. I put up no decorations, I didn’t listen to the constant Christmas music, or watch the Christmassy shows. I chose to remember our Christmas in August as the only Christmas this year and The magic of the season remained buried beneath my sorrow. December 9th started like any other day that month. Forcing myself to get up, forcing myself to smile, and just getting through the day. Later that evening I had gone upstairs for a glass of wine with one of my favourite people, and when I came back down stairs I was greeted with a most unexpected surprise. There, on my doorstep was an incredibly wrapped Christmas present with a card typed with my name on it. With Tears stinging my eyes, threatening to pour, I opened and read the card. It explained how although I have chosen not to celebrate the season, that ‘they’ wanted to celebrate me, Lilee-Jean and her legacy. “Like the twelve days of Christmas,” it said, “each day you will receive a gift on your doorstep as a reminder that you are deeply loved and cared for.” And the card was signed off by none other than the man in the red suit. Santa. As I lay in bed that night I cried. I cried for Lilee. I cried for me. I cried because for the first time since she passed away I felt a glimmer of hope in my heart; hope that my tomorrow’s will be kinder. Just as my Santa had said, each day an impeccably wrapped gift lay on my doorstep, brightening my entire world. I laughed, I cried, I freaked out (mostly because I SWEAR Santa was reading my mind), and I would sit completely and utterly speechless. Each day my sorrow was slowly pushed aside, the darkness started to break apart, and rays of Magic were shining through. These packages of sparkle and love not only brought me some incredible things, they brought Christmas to this heavy and broken heart. With each gift I let tears come freely, I sat alone with appreciation, with grief and with love. December 19th started like each of its 11 predecessors. I peaked through my blinds and saw two astonishingly beautiful gifts waiting for me. I poured a cup of coffee to savor as I took in each moment of this second to last day. The day was a good one, as I had noticed was a bit of a trend since these 12 days had started. I was able to donate some of Lilee’s unopened toys to be wrapped for a 3 year old girl who was more than deserving of an
exceptional Christmas, and ended up at my mom and step dads for dinner. I came home, after being out and about all day, immediately took off my pants and bra (don’t judge, I live alone. ) and started the internal debate of whether to tidy my living room or make a Caesar and relax. But then, quietly at first.. And then a little louder, I could hear the crunch of the gravel stairs by the side of my house. I looked a little closer and could see glowing orbs passing by my window. And then it began. “We Wish You A Merry Christmas, We Wish You A Merry Christmas, We Wish You A Merry Christmas, and a Happy New Year.” I jumped to my feet, slightly in shock, scrambled to put on the articles of clothing I had taken off, and ran to the door. There standing before me, were 15+
humans in Santa hats, holding candles and singing straight into my heart. Then the skinniest (and most feminine) Santa I had ever seen introduced herself to me, beard and all. I can’t say I have ever hugged a stranger as hard-sorry Santa- and it’s been a very long time since I’ve had such a surge of complete happiness. As I choked back the tears I
explained my lack of clothing, and had to ask “Who ARE you??” To the group of strangers standing before me. Everyone laughed but no one would tell me. Santa began to explain that they know the last drop was suppose to have been the next morning, but with the help of the gorgeous elves they wanted to give it to me tonight. She presented me with a certificate and explained that they had paid my rent for 3 months, to give me the time I needed to gradually figure out what my new normal would be. I stood in awe, I stood in tears, I stood in a tangible circle of love and magic. And as Santa hugged me one more time, the elves began to sing, and I was given words of love and encouragement. Words of importance; that I was important. Words only she could have given me, with love that only they could have gifted to this little basement suite, the home of an angel daughter and a broken mother. They brought this Miracle on Sandringham Drive and as quickly as they came they were gone…And Then it started to snow…
With all the love I have, to my secret
Santa and her elves, Thank you for bringing light and magic into my
life. I will be forever grateful and forever indebted. I Believe in