All of my Salukis past have photo ornaments on our Christmas tree. This year, we have added a new one. I miss Ryder terribly, and even though Kira is here, it’s the first Christmas since 1980 that I haven’t had a Saluki in the house. All of my hounds have loved Christmas and seemed to understand the family fun and togetherness that holiday brings. Kai was especially into the holidays. I’ll never forget the day we got the stockings out to hang on the mantle, and he dug into the box and found his own. He ran through the house, carrying that stocking, overjoyed that Santa would soon be filling it with goodies.
The little dolly in the image above was on my mother’s first Christmas tree. Dolly is 96 years old this year and is a true treasure. Mom passed in 2006, but I believe her spirit is happy to see her Dolly on our tree every year.
The holidays are truly a time of powerful emotions. Some of those emotions are joyful, and others are very sad, as we think of loved ones gone beyond. When I put Ryder’s ornament on our tree this year, I had to hide in the bedroom for a little while until the tears stopped flowing.
But, you know what? That’s okay. I have suffered a lot of loss, especially in the last couple of decades. This is part of growing older, as we all discover. The longer we live, the more often we have to say goodbye. I have come to see grief as something positive, though. I chose, long ago, to view my heartbreak over loss as a part of me that is to be honored. We’ve often heard the saying that grief is the price we pay for love. I see it as something more. I see grief as a very real and tangible proof that love lives forever.
Those tears when I hang my Saluki ornaments are not a bad thing. To me, they are as much a part of Christmas as the treasured gifts, the family festivities, and the love.
I hope you all have a very Happy Holiday, however you choose to celebrate. May joy fill your hearts, and even the sorrow bring blessings.
News and Information:
Remember that my Holiday Special is still ongoing and ends on January 1st. Feel free to drop me an email if you are an existing client interested in participating.
Also, this is just a reminder that I will stop accepting new clients as of January 1st. My last month’s issue explained that more fully.