Yes my friends, another holiday is almost here.  Even though it’s a Christian celebration, it has, just like Christmas, wound its way into our everyday world with easter egg hunts and bunnies with baskets and the potentially dreaded family gatherings.

I say dreaded because for those who are grieving, they can stir up all kinds of difficult feelings.  Someone is missing- period.  It just can’t be what it should be.  There’s no way around it.

Maybe that person used to carve the ham or make the pies or play games with the kids or… maybe she or he was supposed to be one of those kids eagerly looking for eggs or gobbling down chocolate.

I know that our holiday table has shrunk a lot.  We don’t really need that second table anymore.  My family all come to our house for Easter dinner and as I look around at my 2 boys, 2 nieces and 2 nephews, I always, always feel the mixed blessing of having them all to enjoy while feeling the sadness of my daughter’s absence and wondering how she would fit in with them all.  How would she be dressed?  How would they get along?  What would they talk about?

I also feel the memories of others who we miss so deeply – my father and Carol, my brother’s wife, and we always recall things about them while we talk.

Although it all sounds so sad, I always return to the realization and the belief that I wouldn’t change it because the fact that we had, and have, such great love for the ones who can’t be with us physically any longer is why it is so hard to be without them.  Our missing them and hurting for them is from the imprint on our souls of that great love and we are so fortunate to have it.   So when I have those few opportunities to gather with people I love a lot, I give myself time to feel the sad things I need to feel, then move on to let the “imprinting” continue.


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