I really love this time of year. The day after Thanksgiving is when I really start getting into the Christmas spirit. I have the Christmas music going, I am buying Christmas gifts. I love the Christmas lights, I love the sounds of the bell ringers outside the stores. It all signifies the Christmas season. It makes me happy, so happy in fact that I just want to run down the street yelling Merry Christmas at everyone. Christmas makes me want to burst with excitement.
Obviously, it's my favorite holiday. I love Christmas and it just makes me feel warm and comfortable. I was talking to my niece today, and we both agreed that although this is a great time of year, we miss grandma more on the holidays. Christmas was the holiday where my grandma went all out. And to be honest, it drove me crazy. I hated how much she decorated for Christmas. She really went overboard. From her snow flocked tree, her numerous ornaments, her Christmas dolls that went above the mantle, the putting up the lights in the coldest of weather, the Christmas presents. She rocked the good ol' Christmas sweaters/sweatshirts and occasionally would even rock a Christmas turtleneck under those shirts. She wore Christmas pins and let's not forget Christmas earrings/necklaces. She would manage to wrap my presents right in front of me and I would be so involved in the present she had instructed me to wrap, that I never saw what she had wrapped for me. She would hand me the present and tell me to put it under the tree. I would always get mad that the present was for me and I didn't see her wrap it. No matter how old we got, Santa still brought us presents. She baked goodies for all kinds of people and always bought a huge box of chocolates for our bank. It's all stuff I despised growing up, because I was the one who had to help.
But now, all things Christmas remind me of my grandma. It makes me miss her so much. Before she passed, she had this reindeer that when you pressed his hand, he sang "Grandma Got Run Over By a Reindeer". She loved that stupid thing and that was her favorite song. I, however, hated that reindeer! It drove me crazy. Nine years after she's passed, I still have that reindeer and it still works. It has become my favorite Christmas item that I have. I take it out every year and just sit down and play the song a few times. It bobs it's head while singing and I smile to myself because it reminds me of how much my grandmother loved it. I can still see her smile and hear her laugh as she plays it.
Holidays are not easy on me due to her passing. Since she's died, I've had numerous Christmases. But they've never been the same that they were before she died. I feel so out of sorts this time of year, no matter how much I celebrate, it's not the same as when Gram was alive. I have friends and family, but I feel so alone this time of year. When my grandma was alive, she conquered the world (or at least the state of Indiana). She was everything to me and she was the glue that held our family together. Nobody can do Christmas like Grandma did, nobody.
I want things to be like they used to be, but I know that's not possible. She's gone, our family has changed so much. We've all started new celebrations, new traditions. And if we were to all get together right now, I can guarantee chaos will soon follow. I wish it wasn't true, but it is. We all fell apart when she died and we haven't been able to pull it back together.
I keep my grandma's spirit alive at Christmas as much as I can, all I really have to hold onto is that reindeer and lots of great memories.