This years Christmas was hands down the best Christmas I've had in the last couple of years. To tell you the truth, our last two years of celebrating Christmas are a complete blur. I honestly don't think my heart was in it...it was too busy breaking...I was too busy being sad, angry, scared and confused. Christmas morning brought with it the bittersweet pain of seeing the joy in my girls faces, while I hid the pain that was hiding in their mom's heart.
I was in a state of grief, angry that we didn't put candy canes on our tree because I didn't want my kids to ask for one and me having to possibly tell them "no" because their blood sugar was too high, or maybe I was just too worried about how their numbers would react to a stick-o-sugar? I was sad that instead of running downstairs to tear into their gifts, I had them both sitting on the floor poking their tiny little fingers so I could get their blood sugar readings...only to find out that they were too low and we needed to eat breakfast first. We measured out food, let them eat, calculated carbs, gave each of them a shot and then, only then could we sit down and rip open presents.
My two precious babies, living everyday with this disease that disrupted everything. My pain was deep and dark, the sadness had consumed me and because of that sadness I missed so much. I sat there with my family, a smile plastered on my face, doing my best to "pretend" I was all there...but I wasn't. My mind would constantly drift back to that time when diabetes was a word we never used. Insulin was a mystery and carbs...who cared about carbs?!
I wish I could remember the presents, the laughter, the joy...thankfully I have the home movies to remind me that these moments did actually happen! I can look back on those videos and say "Oh yeah! I do remember that, I was sitting on the couch that day and maybe, just maybe, I did enjoy some of it...I am smiling in that picture after all."
I wasn't into the decorating, the music, buying presents or mailing out cards...I was in too much pain.
Something has changed in me this year, I can feel a shift in my heart, my soul and my mind. The fog of despair is lifting and my joy has returned. This Christmas was the first Christmas since diabetes entered our lives that I have been able to feel like I can actually celebrate and enjoy the holidays again.
This year I wanted to C-E-L-E-B-R-A-T-E!!! I wanted to listen to Christmas music every single day, I wanted to light up our house with so many lights you could see the glow a mile away! I wanted to color pictures of trees, Santa and Frosty with my girls all day long...make snow angels, stand in line for Santa and relish in every memory that was created with my family this year...and for the first time since D came crashing into our life, I did relish every moment.
This year was magical, as corny as that may sound, I was HAPPY, diabetes is still here, but, this year diabetes didn't ruin the party...or at least I should say, I didn't let diabetes ruin the party. It took me some time and a lot of soul searching, but it was worth the wait.
Diabetes still brings me to my knees from time to time, I've spent many nights crying myself to sleep, the grief doesn't ever fully go away but with time the intensity of that pain begins to fade a little...finally allowing some room for the joy to find it's way back into our hearts.
The girls had their candy cane this year :)