When I consider where I was 5 years ago at this time....my abuser had just passed away, leaving me with a mess of family situations to deal with. I felt overwhelmed but relieved. I had moved my father to an assisted living situation because of his behavior and he had disowned me because of it. He signed all of his insurance, power of attorney and blah, blah, blah over to one of his "poor" sisters. When he died, his sisters, the ones to whom he turned "after I kicked him out of his home" for no reason at all (attempted sexual molestation of a 3 year old was nothing in his warped head), couldn't sign any of the papers to bury him or do anything at the funeral home because they were not the next of kin. I was.
My father had bullied and berated and bullshited his way through his entire life. He was a big talker and a big chicken. He had a fear of being cremated. But the poor aunt had misinformed the funeral home as to her position in his life and they cremated him before I got there. They, the sisters, weren't going to shell out any sizable amount on a funeral and the cheapest way was of course to cremate him. The funeral home was a little scared when I let them know that, especially since I had not signed the orders. Remember, I worked for these people and I knew what could have happened if I really had been my father's daughter. Hell might never have been paid.
He and my mother had bought crypts at the cemetery in which I worked and he did that because he was afraid to be buried in the ground because of the bugs. Like he's gonna know when he's dead????? So when crypt shopping, and I swear this is true, he picked a crypt near an electrical plug because he asked me to make sure he had a night light in his crypt........yeah right like that's happening. Anyway, before I got to the funeral home, they had already cremated his remains. I swear, it took everything in my power not to laugh. Burn you sorry sack of............
And his sisters made it quite clear that they had a funeral planned for him and wanted me to go along with being the grieving daughter. To put on the front because that's what my father deserved. Uh, no, I could think of alot of other things he deserved but respect and decorum weren't on the list. I told them we would have a proper funeral for my father when my "siblings got here". Of course all of our lives, they chose to not be a part of my or my siblings lives because my father lied to his own family and told them he never adopted my brother and sister and they weren't really related to them so why bother with them. Charmers eh?, As a matter of fact, they had no idea my brother had passed away. So we would be along time waiting for him to come to my father's funeral. My father had no death notice in the paper, no one knew he had died and a year later in a private service, they shoved him into the hole in the wall next to my mother. Or at least that is what I was told by the cemetery.
Then 3 years ago at this time, I was faced with no family to celebrate with or for. And I really shouldn't put it that way because Sweet Man was here, but we were both in zombie drive. The grands and Shelley were in South Carolina. I felt empty and alone and really had no desire to participate in the holidays.
I'm a big hermit anyway but I didn't go to the stores after Halloween and just read and did home things. But it was possibly the longest holiday season on record to SM and I.
Fast forward to 1 year ago. The kids are here. We are all stuffed in this medium sized house with holiday "you name it" everywhere and I felt like I did when Shelley was little and I would get the tickle in my stomach as I was lying in bed waiting for her to get up at the crack of dawn and thinking I could hear Santa's jingle bells too. Or our looney tune cop friends whistling Silent Night on their loudspeakers outside our house.
Sweet Man's experiences as a child at the holidays wasn't exactly joyful and so he has better memories of the putting the toys together (with parts missing at midnight) Christmas eve. Seeing the joy and surprise on our sweet baby girl's face and knowing that Santa Claus and the Spirit of Christmas are real, if only you believe. So this last year brought us full circle with the kids. Again, the joy, the magick, the belief was here, alive and well in mudsville.
So life for me has gone up and down, just as I am sure it has for all the rest of you. Good, bad, sad, happy, flat and sparkle.
I hope you find joy in Mudsville this holiday season.