Christmas is the most wonderful time of the year, a joyous time meant for parties and celebrations with friends and family but this year was the worst Christmas of my life, the first Christmas without dad. Dad was larger than life, the most joyful person in the family especially during the holidays and at family gatherings and I never imagined spending a Christmas without him.

December meant a lot for my dad. His birthday was on the 28th, his wedding anniversary a couple of days before that and my brother’s wedding anniversary on December 30th as well. All these joyous occasions were(/will be) trumped by the fact that my dad wasn’t(/isn’t) here to experience them too and I’m not sure how other people deal with the loss of a parent during the holidays, but it truly hurts and it’s hard to overcome him not being around.

We’ve almost hit all the “first” milestones this year, his upcoming birthday will be the most painful one to “celebrate” but there’s nothing much we can do. Being surrounded by family and love helps a lot as well as having Brian and Sophia (my niece) around but the holidays will never be the same again. Of course we all made sure to have a proper Christmas dinner and exchange gifts because Christmas is for the kids and dad would have wanted it this way.

I don’t think there’s a guide to process grief and how one grieves is a very personal journey but all the articles I’ve read online suggest things get a bit easier after this year of “firsts” so let’s hope next year will be a bit more cheerful for the family.

Merry Christmas to all of you and many thanks for those who sent me thoughtful wishes.