So I would say the letter to my family about my desire for Luke to be included in Christmas was a success. They didn’t reply to the email or say anything directly about it, which is typical (not because they’re mean or anything, they don’t really reply to emails), but they did take it to heart. It was not a bad day, although it did of course include sadness. I cried for a few minutes in the closet mid-day. Some of the day was a little blurry for me. I couldn’t remember what presents I got the next day. But we had some good family time, nice meals and thoughtful gifts. When my dad said the prayer before dinner, he didn’t mention Luke by name, but he said, “It’s been a hard year…” and I appreciated that. Before they left, my mom said she hoped I had a good day. Then she said, “Well, you got through it” and I cried a little while she gave me a long hug. It was nice to have that element of the day acknowledged.
Here are the ways that they included Luke in the day:
My mom had asked what she might sew me for Christmas gifts. I said a stocking for Luke with his name on it and some pajama pants. Here is Luke’s stocking. My mom made a big point of giving it to me on Christmas eve, even though that meant opening it in the parking lot of church after the candlelight service and it was freezing. I assume she wanted it to be hung before Christmas morning, which was nice.
My sister had a present for me to open on Christmas eve too. She gave us this candle. It’s a little hard to read in the picture, but it says “Luke’s light never fades in heaven.” She said she thought we could light it on holidays as a way of having him with us. She said she thought for like 5 days about what to put on it and she hoped it was good. I loved the gesture to include him.
This was my favorite gift. I had mentioned to my sister that I wanted a piece to add to my Luke necklace with his hand and/or footprint on it. I had seen it on etsy. She told me she wanted to get it for me for Christmas and asked me to email her a link of my favorite one. It’s real silver and it’s an imprint of his actual handprint. I love it. It feels nice to rub his little hand and have it close to my heart.
So, friends, we have survived Christmas, the first one for many of us. Good job! I hope you had blessings in your day. It’s almost a new year and I am glad for that!