Sunday, December 03, 2006

joy to the world

I've had to decide something this week. My daughter made it clear that I had to, and I knew she was right. She was adamant that we would not have a lame Christmas like last year. The two-foot fiber optic tree just didn't cut it this year. Well, last year no one really felt like doing much to celebrate. We passed our first Christmas minus our son, who was behind bars. So what I had to do this year was decide to be joyful and to celebrate. It did take a decision. My first one was to go to a ladies Christmas luncheon that I had hemmed and hawed about for weeks. I was invited, but somehow I kept forgetting to bring the money. Well, come the Saturday of the luncheon, I got everything done I needed to, got dressed and drove myself to the event.

I got to the church and already felt better as I looked around at the tables. Everyone was dressed up, the whole church hall was decorated and our table was the best, even if I do say so myself. I dubbed it the Auntie Mame table because it was covered in white feathers, crystal, fake snow and everything shiny. It made me happy just to sit down. And of course our table was also the loudest and the most fun, it being made up of the ladies from my Wednesday small group. I enjoy them all so much. And right behind us was the chocolate fountain table, so all you had to do was lean your chair back to stick your head in it, which I was tempted to do. There was also catered food, and a bakery cake-everything a mom might do for a Christmas meal. I began to be very thankful for what had transpired in our lives, in that it brought all this and not only all this, but a deep appreciation for the joys of life. Suffering and separation has a way of doing that. The scriptures say the ability to enjoy life comes from God, and I do believe that. I wish that we didn't have to go through the difficulties of life, but being that we all do, there is only one way to do it, and that is to make good times and live in the moment, because how quickly they can slip away.

I did leave the luncheon early, after the meal and lots of good conversation, just because I wanted to hurry home and clean to decorate. I pulled out boxes today and started in. The house already looks better and seems happier. There is a deeper decision here. It was hard coming, and will be harder still I'm sure, but I know it's right, and that is to separate myself. I love my son and I always will. But my being sad or grieving inordinately does not help him. I have to remember this about other relationships as well. We need to rejoice with those who rejoice, and mourn with those who mourn, but there are appropriate seasons for this, and the season of mourning is over. It's time to rejoice!


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