As I mentioned in my last post, there’s a big age gap in my family and often when I was growing up I felt like an only child. I loved Christmas because it was a time when our family was guaranteed to all be together. Plus, being that I was so much younger, my brothers did everything they could to make it magical for me.
I want that same magic for Sprocket – yes it can be a crazy, maddening time of year but if you strip it down to basics it’s about love and connections. We are so proud of how social and friendly he is – he is always so happy to see people which just makes our families so happy too as he’s always willing to go to others for a good cuddle. Even though he’ll be just 8 1/2 months this year, I know that he’ll have a great day because K’s family is all coming to our house for the first year so he’ll have a heap of people to dote on him all day long!
I remember one year my second oldest brother filling our entire living room floor with balloons, confetti and lollies so when I came downstairs on Christmas morning he said that our house must have been an extra special stop for santa that year. He then took me outside where, sure enough, there was some leftover hay on the driveway where Santa had fed his reindeer – he told me the balloons where a thank you from Santa for letting them use our house for a feed.
I also remember catching my Grandma, every single year, underneath the tree shaking her presents to try and figure out what they were – just like a little kid except there was no way we’d be allowed to get away with it!
Now that I’m an adult, Christmas is still about getting together with family and loved ones – now we alternate year and year about with mine and K’s family.
It’s been a long time since my family were all together, just us, and it’s starting to look like we’ll never have that again in quite the same way. My second oldest brother and his wife are very close to splitting up right now. They’ve got four children and they’ve been together for as long as I can remember – I honestly cannot remember our family without my sister in law, I was that young when they met. This has utterly shocked and fairly devastated me. For all my life they have been my role models as far as family were concerned, their relationship was far more positive than that of my own parents and a lot of what I learned about being a good partner/parent I feel I’ve learned from them. Even though we had a few years where we weren’t as close as we could have been, I have still always thought of them as my surrogate parents in a way. To watch them go through this is just heartbreaking. I know that I will always have my sister in law in my life no matter what but I am just so sad – for them, for their children, for us all as a family. I was so much more shocked and upset when I heard than if you’d told me my own parents were getting divorced. I’ve spent some time in the last week with my sister in law and my nieces and nephews and it’s just so damn hard for everyone, but especially at this time of the year. The kids are a bit older now, age 14 – 21, but it’s devastating for them just the same and it hurts to see them in pain too. It just makes me want to hold on so tight to K and Sprocket and never let go.