This Christmas was hard in so many ways. It seemed that my grief period occurred during the first few weeks after Brielle was born. Then I was doing pretty good and it was David who was struggling. Then a few days before Christmas, it suddenly became my turn to grieve and David was doing better. I wish grief would have given me some warning. Really, it just came out of no where. Thanks a lot grief, great timing.

I managed to make it through the second half of Christmas day with a smile on my face. But I spent the morning hiding in my bedroom crying because Christmas music was playing through the house. I don’t think people realize how difficult music is for me. Brielle loved music and I never played her anything Christmas related. I will never know what she would have liked. Then you add the newborn babe stuff on top and it’s like pouring acid on an open wound.

I had envisioned that we’d start a new tradition with Brielle. I wasn’t sure what, but I wanted to talk about it. I wanted ideas. Most days I’m mentally foggy. Grief seems to make me move and think slower than I used to. But whenever David and I would bring up Brielle, the room would get silent and the subject would change. So David and I just kept quiet. I felt like the room was closing in on me and I was carrying the whole world on my shoulders.

After my family left, I felt as if I had been emotionally battered and bruised. David and I spent the following days bingeing out on Psych (the comedic tv show) and eating obscene amounts of popcorn and Christmas desserts. Don’t judge us. And we decided that perhaps Christmas really isn’t for us anymore. So next year we plan on escaping some place else and just not celebrating. I’ll put up a small tree just for Brielle. And we’ll probably do something small for his family. David’s mom has Alzheimer’s (although she doesn’t realize it) and next year may be the last year she remembers us. To be fair, this may have been the last year. But all that is left of David’s family is his nephew and his mom, (his only living brother lives in Germany). So we don’t generally have a large Gentry Christmas. We’ll just have to make our own Wolford-Gentry family Christmas.

For those that don’t know I kept my last name, David kept his, and we are giving our children the last name Wolford-Gentry. Funny thing about David, he respects me more for keeping my name. He likes that I’m independent and didn’t want to follow tradition. I kept my name for quite a few reasons, but one of them being I’m the eldest grandchild and the Wolford name dies out with my generation. Also I’m ornery and didn’t want to change my name. And do you know how annoying it is to redo all of that paperwork? Ain’t nobody got time for that.

So after a really horrible week David and I think we’ll just go someplace tropical or really snowy next year. We’ll hole up on the beach or in a cabin and just forget Christmas. Maybe next year I’ll be pregnant and we can do something special for that baby and in honor of Brielle. But the way Christmas was, will never be what David and I can continue. Maybe we’ll take an annual cruise! Or a trip back to Paris or Dover! Who knows? We’re also thinking no presents. I don’t know. Taking a trip and disappearing from the world sounds a lot more fun. But assimilating back into a family Christmas will take time for us. I’m not sure if we’ll ever be okay with a family Christmas again. We may endure another, but I don’t know if we’ll ever be okay with it again.

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