Penny died in April after 49 years 11 months of marriage, and I’ve got my life back in order. Of course there’s always a background of sadness and an odd teary moment, but I’m healed far more than I could ever hoped for after 5 months.
Then I see Xmas is looming with all the stresses and emotions that could bring.
Already Friends and Family are contacting me with invites to join them for Xmas, which is fantastically kind, but what do I want to do at Xmas?
In truth, Penny and I hated Xmas as an event because the social pressure told us that if we aren’t jolly, gay, drunk, singing songs, overeating and falling asleep in the afternoon, then there’s something wrong with us. We didn’t have children, so no grandchildren, and that would make it all worthwhile, but we didn’t. And we loved our quiet life together.
My Niece said, “it doesn’t matter where you go, Penny won’t be there”. A wise girl!
I’ve spent too much of my life doing what other people think I ought to do, although always meant with kindness. “You’ll have a good time, it’ll be great!!” . Thanks for the invitation, but I’ll decline. I’ll be very happy to pop in over the next week for a tot of whisky and a large slice of Xmas cake.
I think the message from this is that we don’t have to force ourselves to do what other people think we should. I miss Penny every day, why should I go somewhere where I’ll miss her even more? Maybe next year I’ll think differently.
In March, April and May, we have her Birthday, Anniversary of her death, and our Wedding Anniversary. I’m not an old, miserable cumudgeon, and I love a good knees-up, and so I hope to have a celebration for all three at one event.
So what shall I do on Xmas day? Stay in bed? No. Get drunk and go to sleep? No.
I live in Sheffield, so I’ve decided to take myself off to explore the East coast of Yorkshire between Flamborough and Bempton. If the wind is too strong, I’ll leave the Bempton cliffs until another day. Our little dogs and Penny’s memory are coming with me, and we’ll have long chats (all 4 of us!), with turkey sarnies, hot soup and Xmas cake for pudding.
If anyone wants to join me in this little expedition, come along, but bring me a pressie.
Can I be the first to wish you all as happy a Xmas as you can make it.?