The Gift That Changed Everything

It was just two days before Christmas when Dad and I sat on the porch rockers, listening to Christmas music. His words had deserted him by that time, but we didn’t need them. We enjoyed the cool, crisp air of a Texas December, held hands and listened to the good news of a baby born in a manger. We didn’t know he would be gone just a few days later. It was a sweet and precious time, and I’ll never forget it.

I love Christmas decorations (especially the lights!), cards that come in the mail, the wonder on the faces of children, the smells of peppermint, gingerbread and hot Christmas tea, Christmas carols, wrapping gifts, sparkly stockings hanging on the mantle…and memories of Christmases past.

I do miss Mom and Dad so much, especially around Christmas. At times, I have let grief overshadow my joy, and maybe my heavy heart even stole some of the Christmas wonder from those I love. I hope not. Thankfully, as more times passes, it seems that the memories of the Alz Days are growing dimmer. If Mom and Dad could, I know they would tell me to remember the days that brought joy…the days they loved…and let go of the other.

Precious to me are the memories of everyone opening gifts…in pajamas and bare feet, of Mom and Dad singing Christmas music, of their 70’s Christmas tree (white with a color wheel beneath), of Mom stirring up her apple cake…often with a grandbaby on her hip, and of Dad playing the silly song, “Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer” and getting so tickled over it…I love to remember the laughter!

When I imagine them celebrating Christmas with Jesus, I cannot be sad that their long and painful Alz journey is over! I am so thankful for the precious gift that changed everything – the baby born in a manger. “For the grace of God has been revealed, bringing salvation to all people.” Titus 2:11

Even if you’ve heard this song before, I hope you’ll take the time to listen. Caregivers….I know you may truly have a hard time finding four minutes for a song, but I hope you will take just a short break for yourself and soak up these sweet words.

Glory to the Newborn King!

Merry Christmas!

I wrote Dancing Around the Chaos for those who are on the ALZ journey with loved ones…struggling to figure it out and dreading what the next day will bring…but too exhausted and afraid to think beyond the present. It happens to also be a sweet and tender love story that really happened, whose characters are real people. Find it on Amazon:

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2 Replies to “The Gift That Changed Everything”

  1. You have written such a loving memory though difficult memoir of the struggle with ALZ. Remember the great laughter, stories, knowledge they have left for you to carry on. We will never forget our loved ones but know they are together with their Heavenly Father and we will be together one day.

    Continued prayers and celebrations and may you and your family have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

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