When Christmas Isn’t Merry . . .

Those of you who know me, probably think that I go “slightly overboard” when it comes to Christmas. Okay – the first step is admitting that you have a problem, and well, I’m pretty much a “Christmas NUT!” I mean – I do deem it “time to get out the Santas” once Halloween is over. I also listen to Christmas music much of the year. I have three trees up – one of which has over 400 ornaments. I have 200+ Santas in my collection. Even my fish have a tree and Santa! Yes, to me it truly is “the most wonderful time of the year!” But, Christmas isn’t always “merry.”

There have been years when we didn’t go caroling. The sugar cookies had all white icing (Who had time to actually DECORATE THEM!), and things weren’t “perfect.” In fact, for the first time ever, Steve and I spent Christmas Day home alone last year due to Covid. It was horrible – but, we survived! One year, my girls couldn’t come home at the same time, and so Steve and I had Christmas twice – once with each of them. It’s not to say that there was anything “wrong” those years, it was just different. And different gets some – getting used to. There are many who will be spending their first Christmas without a loved one by their side this year. Think of those who lost so much in the storms that swept through our country earlier this month. They’ve lost everything, but their memories. Then, there are the ones who either don’t have family or whose family is unable to be with them over the holidays. How do they feel when they see “everyone else” having company and opening presents and they’re. . . I know that we should be happy and “rejoice with those that rejoice,” but it’s really hard sometimes, isn’t it? For most of my life I’ve struggled with clinical depression, and I find it ironic that at a time when I’m experiencing such wonderful blessings, I can’t stop crying. As I’m anticipating the coming weeks, I realize that again – this will be a year of changes – good ones in many ways – but, still different. It’s time to “monitor and adjust.”

We need to be sensitive and realize that Christmas isn’t always “merry” for everyone. When depression gets a hold of me, I find that reaching out and doing for others is the key to putting things in perspective. Once again, this saying haunts me, “I once complained because I had no shoes – until I met a man who had no feet.” God is good, and no matter what happens in this life, He has promised, “I will never leave you nor forsake you” (Deuteronomy 31:6). “Thanks be unto God for His unspeakable gift” (II Corinthians 9:15). Simply blessed, Courtney

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