I’m not looking forward to Christmas

This post is hard to write, as shown in that I spent the last hour and a half procrastinating and my room is now extremely tidy. But I can’t stop thinking about it, and somehow can’t let go of the hope that maybe, somehow, writing will help.

Last year, my grandmother barely knew it was Christmas. We gave her gifts, had Christmas dinner with her and watched the Christmas specials of her favourite shows, and despite the odd flash of clarity, she was mostly confused, unable to grasp what was going on. But it was the best I would ever see her again. The next time I visited, in April, she was weak, barely even able to sit up or lift her head. Her breath came in gasps, but she still managed to smile at me and blow me a kiss. The next day, she was gone, and my world was shattered.

The first Christmas after losing someone is always hard, but this time it will be harder than the last. Somehow after losing my aunt a few years ago, Easter was the more painful celebration – it reminded me so much of all the time spent in her garden, whether for Easter egg hunts or barbecues or birthday parties…. but at it was at Christmas that my grandmother was always there. In fact, I’m not sure I remember ever having a Christmas without her.

At the moment, the shops are filled with lights and warm clothes and Christmas gifts and I wish they weren’t. I still notice gifts that she would love, and in the next split second realise I will never be able to give them to her. Even the coats that look like hers make me sad. It all hurts, all feels like a reminder of happier times.

But there is no escape from it. Christmas is coming. And I’m not ready.

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