Oh yes! The sparkles have returned! I honestly did not even think about them this year. No expectations at all. But when I opened the door at 4:30 this morning there they were in all their splendor. I cannot tell you what those things mean to me. Yes, it's the connection to Vern - to the first time I saw the sparkles just days after he died; how they made me feel they were a message from him that all was well. But now they also remind me that I'm not as alone as I sometimes feel. That someone out there cares enough about me to do this each Christmas. It is a beautiful Christmas gift and one that I cherish.
This is my third Christmas without Vern. The first one was a blur, just 3 months after his passing. Last year was rough, but this year I was able to decorate the tree. Progress. Not sure I'll ever get back to how I used to feel about the holidays, but I'm now able to hope that may come eventually.
People who haven't experienced the loss of their spouse tend to expect that as time passes we will return to our 'before' selves and everything will be just fine. Ah, if only that were true. The missing doesn't end no matter the passage of time. And it's just not possible to ever go back to our 'before' selves. This experience changes you. Dramatically. No way to get around it.
But in the midst of all the grief and tears and aloneness and change ... little miracles find their way. The gift of sparkles is my miracle. Thank you, bless you, my dear anonymous friend.
The "sparkles" story:
Last year's blog post
December 25, 2010 blog post
CaringBridge post October 1, 2010 (last paragraph)