Saturday, December 26, 2009

Thank God it's Over!

 I never used to say that.  When my kids were little, I shopped my heart out, decorated the house the day after Thanksgiving.  I put up my manger, complete with lights, I put up a large table for my Christmas Village.  I put candle lamps in every window.  I had every imaginable Christmas themed candle holder on any available surface and displayed my snowman collection.  I spent Christmas Eve (after church, of course) wrapping gifts and artfully arranging everything under the tree.  Every label said "From Santa".  I put cookies and milk out for Santa and carrots for the reindeer, and made sure it looked like they enjoyed the snack by leaving some crumbs on the plate and just a few drops of milk in the bottom of the glass.

I baked a dozen different kind of cookies, planned Christmas dinner and actually enjoyed preparing it.  We visited with friends and family, went to everyone's Christmas parties and sent Christmas cards.

I'm not sure when it all changed, but looking back a few years, I can see that everything became much more of an effort, I enjoyed it less and eventually I started just not doing some of the Christmas rituals.  I became more stressed out, year by year, gift by gift, cookie by cookie until last year I just didn't think I could face another Christmas.  Or another day.  I'll spare you the gory details and just tell you that I suffered a major depressive episode and dragged not only myself, but my family through hell.

When I think of all I didn't do this year in preparation for Christmas, my dear husband pointed out all that I DID do this year.  It's been a long, hard road, and my journey is far from over.  I'm not in that dark place I was a year ago, but I'm not my old self either.  Today is one of my better days.  I"m not sure if it's relief that Christmas is over, or the fact that I slept until 1pm today, lol.  It's moments like this that I get just that faintest glimmer of feeling like my old self.  Somewhere inside me, I still remember what it feels like to be happy.

I'm not sure why I'm putting this in my blog.  I'm not usually one to share this kind of personal stuff.  Maybe I hope someone might see themselves and know they aren't alone.  Maybe I just want to chronicle this moment in time to see how far I've come a year from now.  Maybe I want people to remember that there are real people out there in internet land, and not everyone is all happy and shiny.  And maybe I just need to know I'm not alone.

Whatever the reason, I hope those of you who read this had a nice Christmas, and that the New Year is filled with good health and happiness.

And though they don't read my blog, I just want to thank my husband and daughter for being there for me.  Without their love, understanding and support I would not be here.  I love you both more than you will ever know.

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