I’ve been thinking a lot about God lately. Unlike earlier this year, this time I know why. Permit me to explain as best I can. Towards the end of December, is said to be the birth of God’s son Jesus. It’s a wonderful time for amazing celebrations of his birth to a relatively poor couple. His foster father Joseph was an unemployed carpenter and his birth mother Mary was a simple housewife.
For me and my family December has been a month of deep sorrow and regret. My father died on December 29, 2001. My sister only two years older than me, died in the early morning on December 11, 2017. I miss them both so much and wish they were both still here. At times, it’s difficult for me to celebrate Christmas or New Year’s Eve with their deaths hanging over my head like a permanent dark mistletoe.
I try to remember with a great deal of fondness, celebrating Christmas when I was a child and now missing family members were alive and well. Back then, my mother loved this time of year. She hung ribbons full of hundreds of Christmas cards in the hallway by the front door so anybody who visited us could see the cards they sent us. I remember how our home always smelled like hot cinnamon cider, pine wreaths, brandy, gingerbread, fresh baked apple or pumpkin pies.
Mother also made these marvelous fruitcakes from a secret recipe from her mother, starting in September. She stored them in our garage off the kitchen and began soaking them in Brandy on a weekly basis until Christmas. In all my Christmases, I’ve never tasted anything quite like them, so fragrant and delicious.
We hung deep green and red holly, mixed with pine wreaths or pinecones on our front and back doors. My father had us kids helping him hang Christmas lights around the perimeter of our long ranch style house. They looked so pretty and welcoming from the highway. The piece da resistance was the nativity scene he would have us kids hauling upstairs from our musty smelling basement.
I always thought my father deliberately chose the coldest day of the year to hang the Christmas lights outside and the next coldest day to pound those two-foot nativity stakes into the frozen ground. He loved the nativity scene which involved separate stakes for the three Black and Brown wisemen with their camels; three or four stakes for the barn; one stake each for the three or four barnyard animals and three stakes for the brown Baby Jesus and his parents.
By the time we finished whacking the notorious nativity scene into the front lawn, we were as frozen as the ground was. As walking icicles, we looked for some sympathy from our mother. She’d sigh then and say. “You know your father.” Which explained everything to us. At the time, I didn’t understand how revolutionary my father’s nativity scene full of Black and Brown folks truly was. All I knew was how numb with cold my hands and feet felt and how delicious and warm my mother’s steaming mugs of hot chocolate with melting marshmallows on top tasted.
When I think back on those holiday images from my childhood, oh how I miss them. They mean so much more now, with members of my family gone forever. I do have highlights in my life that shine bright as the lights around my former home during the holidays. I’m a mother now and a grandmother of two little girls. The last grandchild is a chubby little girl born on December 1, 2018. Happy Birthday, little one, you’ve made my December sorrows ready to turn the page.
HAPPY HOLIDAYS EVERYONE
Thanks for reading,
Connect with BL Wilson at these links:
My blog: https://wilsonbluez.com/
Facebook Business page: https://www.facebook.com/patchworkbluezpress
Amazon author page: http://amzn.to/1y7Ncar
Smashwords profile page: http://bit.ly/1sUKQYP
Smashwords Author Page: http://bit.ly/1tY3e27
Lesbian Authors Guild: http://lesbianauthorsguild.com
IAN author web page: http://bit.ly/11bhtdz
Ask David: http://askdavid.com/books/10892