It has been lovely to have quality time together as a family over the festive period and time catching up with a few friends and family either side of Christmas. We spent our Christmas down in Cornwall, staying at Coombe Mill. It was good to be able to get away and be in a little bubble – just us and my husband’s parents. We enjoyed our walks around the farm, the opportunity to feed the animals and being able to spend Christmas quietly.
There have been lots of happy moments, as well as moments for allowing and acknowledging grief. It’s four years this week since Jessica had her Fontan surgery and the ache of missing her always feels more acute at this time of year with the festive season and those memories of our time in hospital shortly afterwards. As one year comes to an end and another begins, it also brings with it the reminder that time continues to push us on further away from the life we once had with Jessica. I know that she’ll always be with us and part of us though, and we’ll carry her with us into the new year once more.
What I’ve been grateful for over the last couple of weeks:
- Day 351 – I am grateful for carols and mince pies at church.
- Day 352 – I am grateful for time spent with friends.
- Day 353 – I am grateful that the Christmas trees are finally up. My first time having a real tree this year.
- Day 354 – I am grateful for finding fairies on a winter walk.
- Day 355 – I am grateful for a quiet moment on my own with Jessica.
- Day 356 – I am grateful for Sophie’s excitement at being sent a Saturday Mash-Up mug.
- Day 357 – I am grateful for a ride on a steam train and getting to see Father Christmas.
- Day 358 – I am grateful for a Christmas Eve walk.
- Day 359 – I am grateful for the Christmas magic seen through my children’s eyes.
- Day 360 – I am grateful for a feed run to start the day and the joy of collecting freshly laid eggs from the chickens to enjoy at lunchtime.
- Day 361 – I am grateful that limited space for taking Christmas presents away with us means we had them to look forward to on our arrival home today!
- Day 362 – I am grateful for an afternoon outdoors with friends (and Thomas found a nice spot to chill out while Sophie and her friend were climbing trees).
- Day 363 – I am grateful for a screen-free day.
- Day 364 – I am grateful for a brief visit from cousins on their way back home to Luxembourg. Love how much fun they always seem to have together.
- Day 365 – I am grateful for another year of gratitude making six years in total since I started looking for one thing to be grateful for each day. It hasn’t always been easy and there have been more than a few days when I’ve not felt very grateful at all and times when I’ve been grateful through tears and gritted teeth but I have found it helpful to keep looking for small positives even when it feels very hard to find them.
Other things that have made me smile over the last couple of weeks:
- Creating a couple of new Playmobil Bible readings for church.
- Watching Sophie and her grandad making paper chains together.
- The postscript on Sophie’s note that she left out for Father Christmas.
- Toasting marshmallows on Christmas evening.
- Playing board games together.
- Finding a painted rock while out on a walk.
- Listening to one of my favourite records from my childhood with Sophie. I think it was the first time she’s seen a record player!