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Sunday, December 25, 2016

Your Dying Spouse 250 - The Post-Christmas Blues

The days and weeks after Christmas can be something of a letdown...and when you're a caregiver, they can be downright depressing.

It's not just the question of 'will my husband or wife be around next year'; it's the added energy that goes into physically and mentally preparing for the year's biggest holiday, even if your plans and preparations are very limited.

One builds up adrenaline and the encultured expectation...and then the ornaments come down, the music and TV shows you've anticipated through the year disappear, and ordinary life comes back.

Add to that the fact that Christmas is a time for miracles, and one of these is the chance to push away the thoughts of mortality. Christmas is eternal; for the rest of the year, we're not.

So, what to do? How can you, as a caregiver, find a soft landing?

Here are some suggestions. Some may work for you, others perhaps not. But I hope there will be something of value for all.

  • Celebrate the traditional Twelve Days Of Christmas - Keep the tree up, and give a small gift on each day...perhaps leading to a larger gift on the Feast Of The Epiphany,January 6.
  • Plan some small outings - If possible, plan to take your spouse.patient somewhere special in the days following Christmas. It may be dinner at a nice restaurant, or coffee together at Starbucks...the trick is to make a big deal of it, something out of the ordinary for both of you.
  • Movie nights - If your spouse can't get out to see a first-run film, take advantage of Netflix or Redbox to see a film you've missed.
  • Special cooking - most of the special dishes and deserts become a memory after Christmas, but why not continue them for a week or so?And make the meals a special occasion, with candlelight and good china, if the situation allows.
  • Make New Year's Day a bigger occasion - Add something to your New Year's tradition, like setting off fireworks at midnight, or taking a scenic drive during the day.

What do you think? Might these help? What would you add?

It's with sorrow that I learned of the death of George Michael, a few hours before writing this post. While his life and later music may have been controversial, as a member of Wham! he brought the joy of effervescent pop music to millions, and worked tirelessly for the underprivileged and forgotten. His talent and his generous heart will be missed.

Here, then, is a tribute, the delightful song, "Freedom". The video's charming; it was produced when Wham! made one of the firt appearances of a Western pop group in China.

I hope you enjoy it.

I have another blog, "Starting The Day With Grace". The focus is a grace quote from someone you might not expect (like, say Mick Jagger) and a short commentary. I hope you'll join me.

Marley update... been moved to a sanctuary, and Bay County will revise their 'dangerous dog' codes.


If you can, please do leave a comment. I am trying to answer all, and I am failing, but please know this - I read and treasure each one.

Below are my recent releases on Kindle -please excuse their presence in the body of the blog. I haven't the energy to get them up as 'buttons' in the sidebar. You can click on the covers to go to the Amazon links.


  1. Merry Christmas to you and Barbara! I just learned today the twelve days of Christmas may have had catechism roots for remembering the beatitudes, fruits of the spirit, etc.
    Celebration for the additional days is an excellent idea!!

    1. Tammy, that's interesting - I didn't know that!

      Hope you and yours had a wonderful Christmas, and that you'll have a great Twelve Days (and beyond)!

  2. I like the idea of leaving the Christmas tree up through Epiphany. I always keep our decorations up past January 6. Sometimes they don't come down until well into January. The lights and decorations are so pretty and cozy in the winter. And I like to spread out the celebration!

    A movie night at home sounds wonderful! I hope I can do that with my family sometime in the next week. I usually have to go to bed by 6pm, so I've only been able to watch one Christmas movie with my family this year! Hopefully with the kids not being in school for another week, we will have time to watch another movie as a family.

    Have a good 12 days of Christmas! I hope you and Barbara are able to spread out the celebration and enjoy some special time together.

    1. Rachel, thanks so much for being here tonight. I do understand how tiring it can be to interact in the 'blogosphere'; it is for me!

      Spreading out the celebration is really nice, and it leaves a feeling of fulfillment for me. Does it work that way for you? It gives time to meditate on the hope and the gift of Christmas.

      I didn't manage any Christmas movies with Barbara; by the time she's ready to watch one in the evening, I'm usually too spent to concentrate. I did 'hear' "The Christmas Box" while she was watching it; that's her favourite.

      But yesterday we saw "Gods and generals" and "Independence Day: Resurgence". Not very seasonal, but the time spent together was nice.

      Blessings to you and yours for the Twelve Days!