Today it's 4 months since we lost Elspeth. Last week I actually listed her name when we were talking about which children would be here on a certain day. We delicately put things in her room for storage and hope she won't mind. We try and choose Christmas presents and give up because we can only see things Elspeth would like.
Her inquest was due tomorrow, but has been deferred, so we have at least 2 more months before the Coroner will officially rule her death a suicide. 4 months is a long time, but it isn't nearly long enough, forever won't be long enough. She's here in our thoughts every hour of every day.
We're lucky, we have the 2 little boys who are at the peak of their Christmas magic. At 4 and 6 they both know Santa is real and are already bursting with excitement. Every fairy light and sparkle is viewed with wide eyes and giant grins. Although it's hard to join in with the excitement, and I just haven't felt that Christmas spark yet this year, I look at them and I know we have to do it, we have to make it great. I smile at their little perfect faces, and I know that 2 weeks at home watching movies on TV with their family and some Pringles and a tin of Cadbury Heroes would make it good enough, so I know we will be okay.
I've done Christmas shopping today, I've ordered presents I should have been ordering for the last month (thank the Gods for Amazon Prime). I've booked my big food shopping trip, and started to think about what we need to buy. We're a bit late, but we're winning.
I hope Elspeth's friends are okay. Elspeth loved Christmas and let everyone know it, she stored pine needles from each year in a small metal tin and made a list of Christmas films that she started watching in September to fit them all in. Her friends will be about to have their first Christmas as College students, and I remember mine very well - it was awesome. I hope that they'll celebrate as she should be doing. Singing in the street and grinning at every Santa, delighting in the smells of the trees and the hot chocolate and the scented candles. I hope that they'll miss her, but not so much that it makes them miss out on what they need to be doing. They need to make it great, and have a lovely Christmas drinking in every sight and sound and every smile. Life is for living.
We have to take what we have and what we
can manage, and do our best with it. We all have to make it great, and today we were winning, and tomorrow we'll go and get a Christmas tree, and it'll be awesome and it'll smell just as great. Because if we don't carry on, we give up and we waste everything that we have, and everything that we can ever have. And that was never what she intended.