I’m not sure how to put into words the thankfulness that I feel this Christmas. I know, it is Christmas, not Thanksgiving, but I have many things to be thankful for, especially this year. There were many moments this Christmas that I just wanted to sit down and cry. The difference this year is that those moments were not primarily brought on by missing Scott. No, this year those tearful moments were brought on by witnessing the immense healing that Jaelyn has gone through.
Jaelyn was extremely excited for Christmas this year – playing Christmas music constantly – her ipod was never far from her. It would have driven Scott crazy. He was never a big fan of Christmas music, but tolerated it when I played it. I love Christmas music, but tried to respect his feelings by not playing it constantly. Jaelyn played it so constantly that I was actually getting a little bit tired of it. I was amazed that one of her favorite Christmas songs this year is “Christmas in Heaven” by Sarah Schieber. I also noticed that for the Candlelight service at church, Jaelyn chose to wear her Origami Owl necklace that she had created in memory of her daddy. She talked about her daddy a lot this year. It seems like she has become comfortable in remembering her daddy in her own way this year.
I remember two years ago arguing and ultimately forcing her to take pictures with family. She was in the picture, but by looking at her grumpy, non-smiling face, it was clear that she was not there willingly. Last year I warned her ahead of time that she needed to be a part of family pictures with a good attitude. She cooperated and even smiled. But this year. This year, oh my. Anytime a camera was out, Jaelyn was in front of it or photo bombing someone else – with a huge smile on her face. Everyone couldn’t help but notice the difference and commented on it privately either to me and/or among themselves. Anytime I get my camera out or turn on the camera on my phone, she is jumping to get in front of the lens – although she does respect when I am taking scenery or nature shots. I am loving the chance to do photo shoots with her, without having to “twist her arm” or bribe her to be in the shots!