I’ve been looking for family Christmas photos. I want the photos from when we were young children but I think they are all on slides, somewhere. If I ever find the slides I can get them digitized. What I could find were photos of when I was a teenager. They are telling photos. No one smiles. Expressions range from bored to angry to close to tears. Those aren’t the memories I want to focus on.
I’m struggling with what I had planned to write about today. Perhaps I will save that for tomorrow and let the sadness be what it is today.
It seems that sadness happens so much around the holidays – or perhaps we just remember it more because of the timing. I wasn’t planning on having a big Christmas but now, all the possible Christmas has been sucked out of me.
I plan to have a quiet day. I will go ahead and prepare my little standing rib roast and Yorkshire puddings. This week, the best I have felt is when I forced myself to get up and cook. I made pulled chicken green chile and green rice on Sunday. I was so tired on Sunday and I just couldn’t stay awake. I almost threw in the towel for the day but forced myself to start cooking. It took me all afternoon and most of the pots I own. Oddly, I felt more energized than I had all weekend.
Monday, I made a big pot of spaghetti sauce. Again, it was forcing myself up and into the kitchen and feeling better after. Perhaps I should focus on cooking for the next little while.
Cooking reminds me of Mom. From early memories of standing on a chair and cooking beside Mom to my last memories of being able to connect with her through cooking while she slid into Alzheimer’s, so many of my memories of Mom revolve around food. Many of my recipes are still based on the foods Mom and I cooked together when I was young, especially spaghetti sauce. Even when she couldn’t cut the vegetables or read the ingredients, she could stir the pot and she loved doing that. My recipe is a little different these days but I always think of Mom when I make it and remember standing on my chair and stirring the pot when I was too young to do anything else. Life is a circle.
I wish you all happy memories this Christmas. The sadness is what it is but don’t lose sight of the happy.