THE END AND THE BEGINNING
THE END AND THE BEGINNING
Elizabeth Willis Barrett…………………January 2018
Those who know me, know that Christmas has often been a challenge. I have written and spoken about it often. In spite of my determination to do otherwise, I succumb to frustration for all that is expected during the holidays and I am usually anxious to push through Christmas and get on to the New Year. I love new beginnings.
For an unaccountable reason, this year was different. As I took down the tree, I cried. Real tears. I didn’t want to take it down. It was so beautiful. Well, to me it was so beautiful. I think I finally have it looking like I want it to and with a new outdoorsy star I got for 60% off at Hobby Lobby the other day, next year our tree will be near perfection.
I loved the seven little houses I set up on the living room coffee table and the Willow Tree Nativity (I know, Maxine. Half of it is yours! We need to make that right.) that I set up on the family room coffee table.
I especially loved having all the kids here. We ate and played and laughed and loved. Just one missing—Max who is serving an LDS mission in New York. It was sad not to have him with us. It starts another era for our family—children growing up and leaving. Of course, we already went through that with the first layer when our own children embarked on life. When our oldest left for his mission to Bahia Blanca, Argentina, I was distraught with the feeling of loss. Nothing was ever quite the same again.
Finally we get our grandchildren all here—nineteen of them. I think the production lines have shut down—and then one leaves. And then another will leave and another. And nothing will ever be the same.
Time is moving so fast. Already I’m picturing myself toddling down the halls in the new old folks facility at Guadalupe and Lindsay in Gilbert. Maybe I’ll have a walker. Maybe a wheel chair. I fervently pray that I’ll have my mind. Children and grandchildren will all be super busy with their lives. Brad will have thoughtlessly left for a front row seat in Heaven and I’ll be left hanging around way past my expiration date. These are very dismal thoughts. Better get back to the present.
Now that the tree is safely put away awaiting another glorious Christmas, the little houses are back in their boxes and the nativities are wrapped and boxed for safety, I am determined to make this a good year. It holds promise.
Our neighbor just came over and actually thanked us for teaching our dog not to bark. It’s a sign: this really is going to be a great year!