One of the messages that almost every book about grief will tell you is that holidays are hard, especially the first year. And yes, it’s true. Of course that’s true. But, instead of being consumed with sadness because he wasn’t with us tonight, I decided to focus on being grateful for the Halloweens that he was with us.
Tonight, as Oscar was out trick-or-treating with John, I took some time to browse my photo library and revisit the 4 Halloweens of Julian’s too-short life. He always hated getting his picture taken, so his first three Halloweens weren’t documented well. But I’m grateful that he was a good sport last year — the photos I took of him and his brother Oscar are some of my favorites of our whole photo collection.
Here are some of my favorites from last year….
So here’s what I have to say about holidays: I don’t expect them to be easy. But I don’t expect them to destroy me, either. Holidays, for me, are about celebrating life and those we love. That won’t change just because one of my loved ones isn’t on the planet anymore.
I don’t need grief books to tell me that holidays will be hard — I can decide for myself what holidays will be. I can choose to mourn his absence, or I can choose to celebrate the holidays I had with him. Tonight, I choose the latter.