I normally love holidays. I love the thought of tradition and creating memories for my family. Going to the grandparents house and gorging yourself on food? I’m there. Hosting family and going all out so that everyone enjoys themselves? Yes, ma’am. I never thought I would get to a point where I was “meh, it’s Easter.” Yet here I am.
My mom passed away suddenly 18 months ago. She absolutely adored family get-togethers and having everyone over. The first Christmas without her was rough but we all pulled together and had a traditional Christmas dinner at her house. Same goes for Easter. We have always had Easter at our house and we had a great meal and enjoyed being together as a family.
This year was a little … different. I still keenly feel my mom’s absence and maybe it is the time that has gone by that has allowed me to realize: I don’t give a hang about the holidays right now. #6 and #7 were sick over Christmas so we did not get to have the big family Christmas gathering. And it was okay. Now that Easter is upon us, I am just not in the spirit of throwing together a dinner and pretending that everything is normal. Because it’s not.
I had Easter dinner at our house at the last minute. My little sister was great about helping making the side dishes (homemade macaroni and cheese was awesome!) and S.O. smoked two briskets that turned out fabulous. It was great to have most of the family together again. But it still did not seem like Easter.
I am an adult child who lost her mother. I am not selfish enough to think I am the only one going through this. My siblings also lost their mom and we have a terrific dad. He may not be our biological father but he is our dad and loves us as if we were his own flesh and blood. It hurts, this loss. It has made me keenly aware of how short life is. I need to suck it up and keep up the traditions that help define us as a family. But it is hard.
So, all being said and done I am glad that we had a family Easter dinner. The kids had a great Easter and enjoyed having everyone there. My in-laws were terrific about coming by that morning and bringing the kids their Easter baskets and that helped make the holiday seem a little more like normal. It was not the same without my mom there to be excited about the kids Easter egg hunt, to dictate who would bring what, and to make sure that even the adult kids got a chocolate Easter bunny. #1 did bring me my favorite, white chocolate, and her dad one too. She is also keenly aware of the loss.
I am getting through these moments, one day at a time. And I am approaching my parenting in the same way. One day at a time and trying to remember that life is what we make it, not what we expect it to be.