In general Christmas is my absolute favourite time of the year, I'm like a child when it comes to anything Christmassy and it's not about the gifts but rather more about the happiness and twinkling lights and prettiness and carols.
This year though, for the first time, all I can feel is sadness - it will be the first Christmas without my lovely Dad. I wrote about his passing here - Saying Goodbye to Dad. Since I wrote that post, I also suffered from a tear in my carotid artery, a very serious and life threatening condition which left me debilitated and struggling for a long time (Carotid Artery Dissection).
I suppose the physical events and worry consumed my whole life for a time and the grief for Dad's passing was pushed away to the back of my mind. Now though, I'm feeling a little better and all of a sudden there's lots of room for thoughts and memories to come crowding back into my head.
Like Dad driving down on Christmas day - Mum would always get out of the car first and then Dad would park and he'd come in - using a stick in latter years. He'd always have a coffee and maybe a little treat - although he might demur initially as they were heading onwards to my auntie's house for dinner.
He was always cheery and bright and I know that this Christmas will feel so wrong without him. He loved Christmas Day, particularly because of the food :) I've definitely inherited that part of him!
He always encouraged my business and would ask how things were going and I know that he would be proud that I've done so much this year. Yet although success is great and in a normal state of mind, I'd be delighted, somehow it all seems a bit hollow right now.
I know it will be impossibly hard for my mum and hard too for the grandchildren but we will get through it I guess and I have to remember how blessed we were to have such a kind and gentle man in our lives.
I guess I just need to say for myself and for the spirit of my Dad that we are thinking of you and we miss you.
|Dad at a family dinner in Portarlington|
|Dad and Izzy in Kerry in 2009|