This time of year can be quite trying for someone who has lost a loved one to mesothelioma. From Thanksgiving to the New Year, it is a time when family and friends get together to celebrate the beauty and love of the holidays. At times, there are treasured stories retold of those we mourn; then, there are the times when we feel an emptiness as we gaze at the chair that used to be occupied by someone we cared for deeply.
For me personally, that time of grief really begins in October at the anniversary of my Dad’s passing. It is a time when I look back fondly on all of our memories, but then I realize quickly that the first weeks without him were largely over the most festive times of the year. We went through the motions that first year, trying our best to carry on our same customs like we know Dad would have wanted. It was difficult, but we somehow muddled through. Now, we have had some time to “adjust” and still try to keep things as traditional as possible.
Last year, with the addition of my daughter, things changed again; this time, for the better. She brings so much joy and light to the lives of my family and friends, that it’s not hard to realize that she takes after her grandfather. My Dad was always the one who brought everyone together; now, it seems as though the torch has been passed on to her. Seeing her makes me feel as though Dad is still with me in a very real way, making Christmastime magical all over again.