December 3, 2013
The Christmas after the accident that claimed the life of my precious grandson, Nate, and his friend, Noah, was hard. Of course, it was. Before I suffered such loss, I had no idea just how difficult going through the motions of daily life could be. Even now, as I face the third Christmas, I still have to give myself pep talks to get me through many days.
Kolein, a dear, faraway, Internet friend, probably did not realize then that when she agreed to join me in making a gingerbread house via Skype, she was, in a sense, giving me a huge pep talk. Her willingness to give up her day to walk alongside me gave me permission to lay my grief aside for many hours and just create.
My memory of that day is not filled with a lot of details. I have no idea how much flour went into the recipe or how long I baked the walls. I do, however, remember laughing like a fool as we both worked to get our creations to stand up. I remember how good it felt to have a friend share my first gingerbread-house-making experience.
We took many breaks to deal with real life, but our devices remained on. I got to hear the sounds of her home, and she got to hear the sounds of mine. Our kids or grandkids made appearances from time to time, and all was just festive and fun.
And when we were done, we were impressed!
Those gingerbread houses represented so much more than a creative Christmas project, and they still do. They represent all that is good and right in this crazy world of ours. They represent hope.
Kolein gave me the greatest gift that day. That brief escape from grief world did, in fact, give me hope . . . and isn't that what the Christmas season is all about?
Thank you, dear, dear friend. I will love you forever!
And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you
good news of great joy that will be for all the people.