I started crying during my family's gift exchange. When my family opens their presents on Christmas Eve, it is a bit of a free for all. My sister and I hand out gifts to everyone and they open them immediately. I sometimes envy those families on telelvision where each person opens a gift, everyone ohs and ahs over it, the person says thank you to the giver, and they move on to let someone else open their special present. Our way is more fun though. Everyone still says thank you. The drawback is that no one ever knows what anyone received, except for what they gave. The only gifts I am aware of from this year are chairs my sister-in-law made for my sister and great-nephew. She's really talented and I wish she had drawn my name which brings back to me crying.
My niece drew my name for the gift exchange this year. She's my niece but she really fills the role of my little sister having came home from the hospital on my 16th birthday. (I had my very own version of 16 Candles because of it ~ but that's a different story....) She was 9 when Taylor was born and she became Taylor's surrogate big sister then. In other words, we are close. For Christmas, she gave me a orange-and-white polka dotted storage tote with stationary in it to write Taylor while he's in basic training and a picture frame shaped like a flag with a smiling man in fatigues holiding his young child. My eyes began to water. I put it down and handed out some more gifts. Nope... I am not one of those people who can cry without my face registering it. My nose become red, my skin blotches. I am an ugly cryer. When people started asking if I was okay, I went outside and really cried. My mom in typical mom fashion said... You are going to need to get stronger.
This is the last Christmas before Taylor enters the military. We don't know yet where he'll be next year. I doubt he'll be home and I hope he is stationed somewhere I can visit. I thought of all that instantly when I looked at the picture frame and yes, I cried. I love Christmas. It will never be the same. Different doesn't necessarily have to be bad though. I just need to process the changes.
My family wants to me to go to the doctor and request medication before Taylor leaves in early February. I don't want to do that. I want to rely on prayer and the people around me and yes, Moma, my own inner strength. I know Taylor is doing what God has called him to do. His enlistment into the Marines is a good thing. So, I am going to remain happily drug-free and non-medicated. Pray for us.