13 November 2011

Weekend thoughts...'Yes Virginia, there is a Santa Claus'

I wrote this post and published it a little while ago. Some of you may have read it. 
My decision to remove it for a period was based on something personal that happened a few days after writing it. I did not remove it because I felt I had said anything wrong. 

Something happened that made me want to give myself some time to re-read it and make sure I had written what I actually meant.

In this post there is reference to 'suffering through' the Christmas season. It's a fact of life that some people do. Christmas for some people can be a lonely time, even if you are with other family or friends.

I'm one of those people and this explanation, and the post, is another piece of me that you wouldn't normally see on my blog. I've only ever written about personal feelings a couple of times here.

I love the Christmas spirit of love and giving, and decorating the home and table. I even go as far each year to have a theme for my wrapping under the tree. That all goes a bit pear shaped when the other gifts are piled up under the tree when the family arrives. All in different colours to my theme!!! NOT an OCD moment...I think...not sure. Anyway I digress. LOL

I just don't have any connection to the lead up to Christmas because most years I don't have my immediate family with me.

I have a broken marriage, fact. I still find it very hard to let go of some things from that time, even though it's been a while now. But I have to let go, I know I do, for my own peace of mind. It's important to take into consideration that he and I are completely different people, we think and feel differently and put our priorities in a different order. I have to make that not bother me any more. It's very hard to do that, when sometimes you hear in your head, 'Did any of it mean anything?'

Sorry, rambling here! I'll stop now.

Suffice to say, in this post I mentioned briefly that I have set myself the task of getting over things related to my mindset of the breakup and the subsequent years.

I've done really well in the career department all these years, but still find the emotional part of me needs some soothing. It's tough when you'd been with that person since you were 17 years old.

Brendon, my eldest son, was recently here for a couple of days and showed me his first tattoo, an anatomical depiction of the heart. When I asked him what it meant to him, he said it's because he wears his heart on his sleeve. He does... and so do I. My heart is too open to being hurt or broken. It's interesting that both my sons have selected tattoos that are true to their characters. Darren has a large tree on his right side, from under his arm to his hip. When I asked him what it meant, he said, strength, endurance, dependable. We all wear our hearts on our sleeves though!

I've re-read the original post and I'm happy that I expressed what I was feeling at the time. Some of it is no reflection on anyone else but me, how I feel and what I think about (or actually dwell on sometimes, which is not good).

Christmas for me is a period of getting by until it's over. For those of you who read my blog, thank you for 'listening' and here is the original post.

Merry Christmas to you and your families, sincerely!
Yes Virginia, there is a Santa Claus...

'... He exists as certainly as love and generosity and devotion exist, and you know that they abound and give to your life its highest beauty and joy. Alas! how dreary would be the world if there were no Santa Claus! It would be as dreary as if there were no Virginias. There would be no child-like faith then, no poetry, no romance to make tolerable this existence. We should have no enjoyment, except in sense and sight. The eternal light with which childhood fills the world would be extinguished.'

{excerpt from the letter Virginia O'Hanlan wrote to the Editor of New York's 'The Sun' newspaper in 1897}

It's been ages since I wrote a 'Weekend Thoughts' post, life has been so busy.

Where did the year go!

Over the last few days I've been catching up on my blog reading and 'revitalizing' my own blog. During my travels through blogland, I've noticed references to Christmas popping up. In fact, I've even started wishing blog authors Merry Christmas in my comments! Mainly because we are getting to the pointy end of the 'silly season' and I'm not sure if I'm going to get back to those authors to pass on my wishes closer to the Christmas event.

It gave me pause for thought about how we each think about, feel, suffer (yes 'suffer'...some of us do), enjoy, celebrate, worship, look forward to, dread the clean up (!)...of Christmas.

Which is the reason I come back to the letter from 8 year old Virginia all those years ago.

Even if there isn't a Santa Claus, and I'm not saying there is or isn't...how long before Christmas becomes, or became a frenzy, in your family? And I mean, the fun went out of it and it ended up being a mad rush to have everything organized, to select that perfect gift for that particular person..so on and so on!

It's hard to explain to littlies why there are SO many Santa's? When will my new baby grandson, Archie start to realize where his gifts actually come from. Will he be younger than Virginia's 8 years?

I ask these questions because I'm sure you've all noticed HOW MUCH EARLIER we see the 'gift giving seasons' become visible in the shops. Surely this gives it away!

We see Christmas decorations and 'Christmas Shops' in department stores popping up in October!!! We have no sooner finished with Christmas and the Easter season is upon us.

It's this sort of commercial trade that will have our babies wondering 'Is there a Santa or an Easter Bunny', earlier than we'd like.

You know what though, no matter whether they believe or not, it is still such a joy to see the look on their faces on Christmas morning.

Now I know some of you out there, like me, find the holiday season tough to get through, without family around, or from circumstances that have happened throughout the year, beyond any one's control, but being able to wake up on Christmas morning to the sounds of squeals of delight (not too early I hope), is something I'm hoping to have a lot of with little Archie (and whoever else comes along in the years to come).

I haven't had Christmas with one or both of my boys for three years and Christmas is something I dread most years, because of the distances between us. I miss them so much, they are so far away. One of those circumstances beyond any one's control.

Good news, Brendon, is coming to Sydney for Christmas. Only for a couple of days though. Perhaps we can do something, just the 2 of us. I've got my thinking cap on. Maybe the Harry Potter exhibition.

Darren, Natalie and Archie are staying in Mackay for Christmas, and it looks like the boy's Dad (my ex) is going to spend a couple of days with them. He hasn't seen Archie yet, and even though it's another year where he's been able to see Darren for Christmas and I won't, I have to find a piece of my heart that will wish him joy when he finally meets his grandson (yes, you can read disappointment in my tone, not a good breakup, so yes, I sometimes find it hard to let go).

I still have family to celebrate Christmas with each year, but it isn't one of my favourite times of the year. I prefer birthdays. Brendon is 30 in March and I'm looking forward to that. As it just so happens I have a month off, with his birthday right in the middle of my annual leave. And my niece is 21 at the end of February!

I'm so looking forward to Christmas mornings with Archie (and brothers or sisters, cousins). It's going to be rare but cherished as we are all over the place. Darren - Mackay, Brendon - Brisbane, their Dad - Bundaberg, me - Sydney, Natalie's family - Parkes, Sarah's family - Toowoomba (Brendon's girlfriend).

Both the girl's parents are the loveliest people and I get on quite well with them. It may just be that some years we'll have a combined Christmas here in NSW or in QLD. Or maybe someone has Christmas Day and the others have Boxing Day, who knows. Consultation on who goes where for Christmas, from now on, is probably going to be a tricky conversation, with someone feeling left out somewhere along the line each year. But that's how it is.

Thank goodness for Skype!

Merry Christmas everyone if I don't get to stop by and comment or pass on my holiday wishes. I hope it is all you want it to be.

One last indulgence, another photo of Archie, taken by Brendon last weekend when he visited Mackay to meet his little nephew.


  1. Oh that baby is so so cute, you are one very lucky grandmother, i hope they let you indulge with your beautiful grandson.
    I know how you feel, i have a wonderful marriage although spend many Christmases with him away (Army) & 4 gorgeous children, yet some years we've skipped putting a tree due to moving or being in a hotel & often it's just a month of shipping parcels around the world, with love & care, but often wonder if my nieces & nephews really care, so few actual thank yous!! We're not even religious so really, it's about the gifts & i really want to change that too. We don't need a day or time of year to remember to love each other, we do that all year round. Love Posie


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