Now most of you that have been following my blog for a while know that my Uncle Dick died this past summer! He was my oldest Uncle and he was eleven years older than my next oldest Uncle. The reason being that my Grandparents were told that they would never be able to have children again! However after eleven years my Uncle Jim came along, followed by my Dad eleven MONTHS later, and finally my Uncle Bill five years later. Anyway, I never spent a Christmas with my Uncle Dick. I grew up in Chicago and we never traveled to New York during the winter months. And when we moved here to New York State we still didn’t travel the three hours to visit him because his area got a lot of snow. However, his was always the first Christmas card I received. Also as you know I would write to my Uncle Dick at least once a month. He had told me things I don’t think he told anyone else. So I was very close to my Uncle Dick.
Anyway, I had cried a lot when he died and then I seemed to heal. My Uncle Bill took my Uncle Dick’s ashes up way up New York State to the hunting camp my Uncles and Dad used as young men. Well, guess what? I get this little package from my Uncle Bill last week and I opened it. It was a sliver cross with some of my Uncle Dick’s ashes in it. Now first I want to say that is the most beautiful and thoughtful Christmas gift ANYONE has ever gotten me! However, I cried a cried a good hour. I cried because I missed my Uncle Dick, I cried because I wonder who is next, and most of all I cried because since this summer I had forgotten about my Uncle Dick. It’s hard the first Christmas without someone. Now I am not like other people that get to stare at an empty seat at Christmas dinner because, like I said, we never spent Christmas with him. However, he was still part of my Christmas tradition.
I heard it once said that it is good to feel pain after someone has died, it means that we truly had a connection with that person. I feel like I had a strong connection with my Uncle Dick and that I still do. My Uncle Dick led a good life, but didn’t find Jesus until the last decade of his life! I know he is in Heaven and I ask him to pray for me. I know that one day I will see him again. However, I also know that from time to time I will hurt. One of the things with a mental illness is to realize that we still have emotions and being sad and being depressed are too VERY different things. Yes, you can get depressed over the loss of a loved one. However, that you need you doctors help with. Being sad and realizing it is healthy is a good thing. In fact I think that grieving in a healthy way to ease depression and symptoms. So anyone missing anyone on Christmas I understand. However, our Savior was born on Christmas to save us from death. Remember!