Sunday, December 28, 2008

My Christmas Wish


I had a little trouble this year getting completely into the Christmas spirit, and I am not sure why. I LOVE Christmas; it has always been one of my favorite holidays. I love the music, the decorations, how MOST people are cheerful and how it brings people together.

This year though was a little different. I was so swamped with things at home, working, and keeping up with all of the school activities, there wasn't time for much else. I tried. I played Christmas music, baked cookies with the girls, and did everything I could to make it fun, but I just never really got there this year. I think the mad rush of it all has a lot to do with it. I went crazy trying to get shopping done, cleaning the house, grocery shopping, wrapping presents, plus the normal everyday stuff, that I barely had time to breathe!

Plus the last few weeks right before Christmas, at least one or more member of my family was sick, so that really made things a little more difficult. And of course, the last couple days when the Christmas spirit almost always takes hold, I was a touch under the weather. *Sigh*.

I've also been worried about a friend of mine's little three year old son. He has Neuroblastoma, a type of cancer, and is really fighting hard right now. He was supposed to have a treatment done a couple weeks ago and was hopefully going to be home by Christmas. However, due to complications the treatment was put on hold and he spent his Christmas in the hospital PICU. Just thinking about that makes me so sad. As complicated and busy as my family life gets, nothing compares to what my friend is going through.

This friend is a childhood friend of mine who I hadn't spoken to since my high school graduation. We went off to college in different cities and slowly, but surely lost touch. Then just a few months ago, I found her while searching for friends on Facebook. I swore I'd never join one of those social networking sites but I am so glad I did. I've had fun catching up with old friends from different parts of my life, but I think I was truly meant to find this friend of mine. For the last few years I've felt I've had this calling to work with kids with cancer and other similar illnesses. I've mentioned this before, but I really want to work in a hospital setting, preferrably as a Child Life Specialist. So finding out a friend of mine is going through this with her son is particularly heartbreaking.

I also have a friend going through her second battle with breast cancer. I was fortunate enough to see her this past weekend after not seeing her for almost ten years. While we've kept in touch through the years, this is the first time we've had a chance to see each other in person. She has just finished round two (out of four) rounds of Chemo and then will have radiation therapy. She inspired me so much because of just sitting around feeling sorry for herself, she's living her life to the fullest, including training to run in the Race for The Cure. She's going through Chemo and she's training for a race? That is remarkable to me. I don't think I can ever have a good excuse when it comes to not exercising anymore!

Christmas flew by and I never had a chance to enjoy it. I wanted to do so much more with the girls but there just wasn't time and I just didn't have the energy. I wanted to write a blog about Christmas and what it means to me, and couldn't even find time to write one word.

I do have a Christmas wish though. As I write this blog, I think about all of the things I have in my life: A wonderful family with a loving husband; beautiful, healthy (mostly) children; a sweet puppy, and nice home to live in. I was able to be with both sides of my extended family over the holidays and they were all kind enough to have nice parties for my *gulp* 4oth birthday.

I have realized recently that in all of my complaining or moping how lucky I am and I feel like I shouldn't ever have a reason to be unhappy. That in my absolute worst day, nothing I am going through remotely compares to what either of these two friends of mine are experiencing.

I've also realized that I should not for a second, take ANYTHING for granted. Never. I should relish the time I have with my family, my friends and enjoy it, instead of worrying about what I haven't accomplished, don't have, what could be different, etc.

So my Christmas wish (however late it is to make it now) is not for me, but for my friends. I don't want anything more for myself than I already have. I want my friend's little boy to be cured of his cancer and live a long happy, healthy life. I want my friend with breast cancer to win this second battle of hers so she can continue to be the great mom that she is and see her children grow up. I also want my loved ones to know how great they have it. To not take life for granted, live life to the fullest and be happy to be who they are. To know how lucky they are to live in this great world of ours (which believe me, I know does not always seem so great). Make the best of your life and don't dwell on the things you don't have, didn't accomplish, etc. Why live life that way? What is the fun in that? Find something that makes you happy. Do something for yourself, or better yet, someone else. I know I will.

1 comment:

Liz said...

Amen. I've been struck by several friends who have endured horrible losses this season- all in the week of Christmas. It's been hugely stressful on me- and I know it's a million times harder on them.

I'll add your friends to my prayer list. It's been getting longer and longer lately.