Thursday, 22 December 2011

Christmas is coming again, the sixth without you.............

 Well, Matthew,
Here we are again, it's Christmas time. This year it is very different. There will only be your dad and I on Christmas Day, for the first time I can ever remember since we have been married. And on Christmas Eve it is 41 years since we got engaged.We will spend Christmas Eve with your brother and his wife and our lovely grandson, now 11weeks old. His mum said to him that when he is old enough they will tell him about his Uncle Matthew, (who would have been 35 this year.)      
Our Christmas tree this year. December 2011
I have decorated the tree and hung lights outside, as I love Christmas time - and as we've said many times before, so did you. Only I feel a sense of sadness in it all. There have been major changes in our family once again which you were not able to see or to be there. Two more of your cousins were married, and weddings make the lack of your presence more noticeable. Your nephew was born. And your young wife remarried, and is making her home in America. We are really pleased for her. She is moving into a large family.    
Smudge the rabbit and Rudolf the reindeer. December 2011 
So, Matthew, I've included a photo of Smudge the rabbit and Rudolf the reindeer. Why?
They are both things which were very special.
Smudge the rabbit was bought for my mum by my dad years ago. She died 21 years ago this year,aged just 70. After she died Smudge lived at the bottom of the stairs in dad's home, sitting in a wicker basket and wrapped up in a scarf. When dad could no longer live on his own, Smudge went with him to his Residential home and sat on his bed.
Inanimate things can be "real" when they are cherished for the memories they hold or simply because of the person to whom they belong. 
I now have Smudge here. He sits on the bed, still wrapped in his scarf, a reminder of my mum and dad. 
Rudolf was given to you Matt, one Christmas, by your wife, and we all laughed as he looks like a reindeer with attitude and a face that is full of mischief! 
After you left us Rudolf took on a different significance, going everywhere with your young widow. . But it became time to close the door finally and begin a new chapter, so Rudolf is now here with us. 
A tangible reminder of a cheeky grin, a sometimes irritated "don't suffer fools gladly" stare and a heart that cared for others. 
He went to work with your dad the other day, as there was a competition for the most creatively dressed desk in the office. 
And he was a big hit, even though no prize was won!      
So on our sixth Christmas without you since September 2006, I love you, I miss you and hold you in my heart. 

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