Friday, December 23, 2011

Yes, Virginia, There Is A Santa Claus

Ron loved this saying.  He believed.  Ron loved everything Christmas.  He played his Christmas music all year.  He loved all the Christmas classic movies like Miracle on 34th Street, Scrooge and Polar Express.   When we lived in our house he started a Santa collection and had always wanted a snow glove collection.  Living aboard was not the ideal time to enhance or start any Christmas collections.

Heck one year Ron purchased the 'fireplace' dvd so we would have a crackling warm fire on the boat for Christmas dinner.  That's my Ron!

Candles were also a big part of Ron’s life.  He was the romantic of the two of us.  There never needed to be a reason to light and enjoy the soft glow of a candle.  It was romantic and so was my husband.

It occurred to me that if I was going to enjoy Christmas in any way I had to incorporate and keep alive the spirit of Ron.  I stretched my brain to come up with a solution that felt so right it would put a smile on my face and fill my heart with joy.

First, there is the challenge every year of making Christmas possible for those less fortunate.  Ron and I have always been generous to each other all year.  I took time to write a heartfelt but brief note in a card to explain how this donation came about.  Then I took the amount that I would have spent on Ron put it in the card and donated it to Santa’s Anonymous through CFAX Radio Victoria.  This was all I needed to get started.  The next idea just appeared.  It was what to do for our kids, Stewart, Meghan, Kirsten and Ryan. 

In the spirit of Ron I knew exactly what I would get them.  Unbeknownst to me, the first step was far more difficult than I could ever have imagined.  Simply put, I could not go to the Mayfair Mall.  I drove around and around and around then drove away.  I could not bring myself to park and shop.  I had intended to shop at the newly created Christmas store. 

In the meantime, it was agreed that I would have Christmas with Stew (and family) and Meghan (and husband Blair) on December 10 in the Comox Valley.  I would celebrate with Kirsten and Ryan at a later date in Victoria.  This would work!  I was excited but now I really had to go into the mall.  In I go.  Good on me.  Out I went.  I could not bring myself to go into the Christmas store.  As anxiety set in, I bolted. 

Time was running out; the tenth was drawing near.  Into the store I go.  My goal was to purchase four Christmas snow globes; one for each of our kids.  This was the spirit of Ron coming alive at Christmas.  I stepped into the store and simultaneously the tears started to flow.  I sobbed and sobbed.  My vision was bleary.  I forced myself to walk around the store no less than three times to ensure that I had noticed every snow globe so I could pick four.  It did not happen.  I once again abruptly left empty handed. 

I had seen what I wanted I just had to muster up the courage to carry through.  On the morning of December  9th I had no choice.  One day before our Christmas I mustered up the courage, marched in and objectively made the purchases.  There, the first step was done.  It only took three or four tries. 

Next, I purchased each of the kids a Christmas music CD – something Ron would have liked.  And then, I purchased each of them a pillar beeswax candle.  This gift was all Ron.  His spirit will live on at the homes of our children.  Needless to say, tears were shed when I explained the significance of their gift. 

From the kids, for their gifts to me, early in December I had requested they give to others less fortunate so those children could have a Christmas. The joy of giving temporarily released my heart from the pain of my loss.

Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus. 

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