Holiday Spirit

Christmas Day will mark 2 months since my beautiful light filled boy left this earthly realm. So far, no day has been easier to swallow this bitter truth than another, but I fear the weight of this approaching “first”, more than I can articulate.

With a niece and nephew still young enough to find magic in the season, I feel a strong conviction to make space for celebrating a childs favorite time of year. And yet, my cheerfulness leaves much to be desired.

Isaac, Abigail & Jackson were as close as siblings– perhaps because Isaac was an only child, but I think in large part due to the fact that my sister, Jessica, their mama and Isaac’s auntie, and I cultivated their connection because of our fondness for each other, and because the daddy’s, Phillip & Johnny are as close as brothers.

While Abby & Jack adored and admired Isaac, the oldest, Isaac doted on them and loved them with his whole self. Christmas at Granny & Grampas has always been their favorite time together– the traditions, the games, the laughter, the food, the “comfiness” as Isaac called it (and if you’ve ever been to my folks, you know what I mean).

Without Isaac there, with the gaping hole of his absence, what can we do? How do we do the same things? How do we not? How do we try something new?

Isaacs death has already eroded an essential thread of their innocence; without the holidays, will everything that remains come undone? How do we make space for our own pain AND theirs and still find a way to infuse a little Christmas Spirit into the time we spend together?

The good news is, because of the deep and abiding faith of my folks, and of Abby & Jack, we know & honor the true meaning of Christmas; A child was born to light up a dark world. I relate to this now more than ever. A season of light was created to maintain that light in our own hearts and all the hearts of humankind. Peace on earth and goodwill towards all (wo)men.

Perhaps I have just answered my own questions…


Published by: christinaryanstoltz

I write to touch the supple center of unguarded ache~ To release myself from the pressure of not knowing how to move forward from the unfathomable loss of my beloved son, my beautiful boy Isaac, to suicide, of not knowing how to release my grip on of the past, both the worshipping of it as well as the beating myself up for it, and letting go of the need to know what I could’ve done or what on earth I will do now. I write to heal.


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