It has officially begun...the Holiday season is on.  Black Friday began on Thursday night this year, a new tradition that troubles me because I liked thinking that at least two days of the year, (Thanksgiving and Christmas) were set aside to celebrate family and friends and now that seems to be compromised.

The folks who shared laughter and stories at my table had no thoughts of shopping Thursday night.  We raised our glasses and toasted to the fact that we were happy to be together.  We were grateful to be able to share the joys of the holiday and we were missing those who had celebrated at our table  for so many years and now they were gone. Cancer made sure of that.

We remembered them in the telling of Thanksgiving stories from past years, and then we made new memories.

After all the guests had gone and the house was quiet, maybe just a log crackling in the fireplace, I rewound through the night.  I thought about how this Thanksgiving was different.  They are all different now, because I don't have my partner to share the "rewind" with, so I just imagine what  his reaction would have been to the evening.

The holiday season brings with it some hard days.  This was just the beginning and I'm better prepared to handle it this year.  I get stronger every year and I'm hoping all of us who are living with loss, feel stronger too.

We need to "lift" with a capital L for the next few weeks.

Remember years ago, I asked you all to count, 1...2...3...LIFT?

I'm asking again.


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Mully December 3, 2013 at 1:52 pm

Hi everyone! I just wanted to give you an update on my friend's son (just turned 1 in June, he was diagnosed with stage 4 neuroblastoma just before his 1st birthday). He made it through a summer of chemo and had surgery in mid-October. Walking was delayed a bit because of all his treatments, but he took his first steps about 2 weeks ago. Currently he is recovering from his stem cell transplant- Thanksgiving was day 1+. So while we are all lifting, perhaps we can lift a bit for little Wilson. He can really use it right now.

Judie December 4, 2013 at 1:18 pm

Oh, Mully, does this strike a chord with me! 14 years ago I had a stem cell transplant and Thanksgiving Day was day +1 for me. While my circumstances are vastly different than this little one's, I so very much hope that there is a special "magic" about the timing of his transplant and that all goes even better than hoped. I'm always lifting, but am now doing so extra hard with this kiddo in mind. All the best to his family. Thank you for the update!

Maureen (Mo) December 2, 2013 at 8:01 pm

The wonderful thing is how this simple phrase works: "1. . . 2. . .3. . . LIFT", and you just know everyone's offered a hand to make the burden lighter.

Laurie Hirth December 2, 2013 at 6:52 pm

You got it Laurie.. I know everyone is lifting me right now! It just comes back to haunt us and each year we try to figure out how to make it not hurt so much...
I think, for me, it's all the change I am going through again...and of course, I lost Neil 6 years ago...where does that time fly! I just remember holding him so close while he went to the other side and it still brings tears to my eyes. I am overly sensitive right now. I know why, the hard part is... no one else does....
Y'all remember Stan? Yesterday, a message from him from years past, popped into my email as a flagged email. Weird huh! He was telling me to hang on back then.. it's weird. In the email he was telling me to stick around this time...Lately, I've been asking myself why I moved here.. I know the reason.. My kids, my future daughter in law and now a grand baby! It was a good message from a dear friend...I guess those of that touched our hearts are still reaching out from another place! I don't doubt for a minute that he was touching me yesterday with his friendship, reminding me that it's going to be ok. A good reminder, we aren't ever alone are we!! Laurie

Sondra December 2, 2013 at 6:48 pm

Happy to be lifting 1 2 3 ! Any time.

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