This is a hard time of year for a number of reasons. There’s a lot of down time, which means more time to notice some of the emotions that we’ve been too busy to give our full attention to. There’s the fact that Christmas is about celebrating the birth of a new baby when we don’t have one on the way and desperately wish that we did. There’s the fact that it’s almost New Year’s, and we really thought that we’d at least be pregnant by now. And instead, we’re facing an even longer road to parenthood. I’d been worried that all of these facts would lead to a general down and grumpy feeling over the holidays. But that hasn’t been the case. Roo and I have both been swamped by sudden waves of intense grief at various times. We’ve managed to take turns being the one pulled out by the undertow and the one pulling the other back to solid ground. But those down moments have been really hard.
In between these moments of despair, though, our time off has been filled with so many moments of intense sweetness.
We celebrated Tad’s birthday. Roo and I spend a lot of our evenings in our bathrobes and Tad has wanted one for some time. I found a purple one (his favorite color) and it was one of his presents. Roo has repeated several times that she has never seen anyone so excited about a bathrobe.
He also got a soccer goal from one of his sets of grandparents and we’ve spent a lot of time in our backyard playing with it.
Roo, Tadpole and I spent a cozy morning collaborating on the creation of a gingerbread house. We had Christmas music playing and we laughed a lot.
It snowed on Christmas Eve, and Tad and I had a grand time that afternoon playing with his soccer goal and trying to catch snowflakes on our tongues. In the evening we went to a service at Roo’s parents’ church. We knew from going last year that visiting kids would be provided with masks and invited to be animals during the pageant. When we talked about the pageant on Christmas Eve morning, Tad was thrilled with the idea of paticipating, but concerned about only having a mask to wear. So Roo helped him make a sheep hat out of cotton balls and a tissue box which he proudly wore.
We got home from the service at about 8:30pm, and Tad dictated a note to Santa with only one request: “a dollhouse for my babies.” This was not one of the items that we were planning to give him and we panicked. As much as I am not into the Santa thing, I didn’t want my little guy to be disappointed on Christmas morning. Fortunately, we had a big cardboard box that some of his other gifts had come in and that (plus a note “from Santa” explaining that it could be used to make a dollhouse) was well-received on Christmas morning. We had a cozy morning at our house, and all wore our pajamas (and bathrobes, of course) until about 2pm. Tad spent a lot of time working on his “dollhouse” and playing with his other presents (for the record, he did get more than a cardboard box for Christmas!).
We went to Roo’s parent’s house in the late afternoon and had a fairly quiet Christmas with them until Roo’s brother’s family showed up around 7pm. Tad had a fabulous time running around with his cousins and the blurs of motion below give you a feel for the activity level. There were difficult moments, including a long conversation about my sister-in-law’s pregnancy. But I love watching Tad and his cousins together, and I am so fond of my neices and nephew. My oldest neice, who doesn’t show affection easily, gave me a kiss on the cheek on her way out the door.
This morning it snowed again and we had a lovely lazy morning playing with Tad’s new toys. The blue and green plastic one is a favorite–a set that can be used to build various vehicles.
Happy Winter Holiday of your choice, and I hope that the new year brings you many moments of sweetness and light.