I know that most of you are celebrating Christmas as I write this, but here in Oz, we're a day ahead of y'all and for us, Christmas is now a thing of the past.
I kind of have mixed feelings about it, because this was my last Christmas in Australia.... and although it was a good one in a lot of ways, in other ways, it was like I wasn't even fully present - if that makes any sense to you.
Probably not, since the workings of my heart and mind are an enigma to even myself at the best of times... and the things that I fully expected to dread seemed to go smoothly, and the things that are pretty much second-nature to me now, seemed to be odd and off-kilter to me.
Oh, don't get me wrong... it was a good Christmas.
I was blessed to be able to spend my grandsons "early Christmas" watching them open their gifts on web-cam, and I felt so blessed to be "there" with them - if only in a small way.
(they alternate between their parents houses, and this is Josh and Becs' way of ensuring a complete Christmas morning and a full day with their presents, before them going to their fathers' and the evil step-mothers house.)
So, I got to spend over 91 minutes watching the boys tear into their gifts, and listening to their squeals of delight... and their sharing their joy and excitement with their gifts with their Grummie and Grumpy ...
And it done this ol' heart good ... let me tell you!
Then later that day, (the day before Christmas Eve to you all in the N. hemisphere, but Christmas Eve itself, here in the S hemisphere...) the Old Guys daughter and her boyfriend showed up - thoroughly and completely making the Old Guys day! It was the first year since Skye was about 2 years old, that he's managed to spend any actual "Christmas" time with her - and he was simply walking on air!
After years of "not nice stuff" that we've all been through with her mother, it was truly a wonderful and blessed time for the Old Guy and Skye - and for all of us.
Then yesterday ( remember...Christmas Eve to y'all - but Christmas day for us here in Oz) was a joy as well, with the Boy opening his presents early, before heading over to spend the day with his mum, and then the Old Guy and I just sort of lazing around watching a video, (okay, snoring, if you really need to know) while waiting for the Boy to return - and for guests to arrive for a late-ish "Christmas dinner".
That went well too, and I thoroughly enjoyed it - although there was a bittersweet aspect to it as well, since it was my last Christmas - probably ever - with Jenn and her family.
We ate and talked... and then we nibbled and ate and talked some more... and after they left, I ended up going to bed sometime well after midnight - feeling full of joy and contentment.
And Christmas cake.
It was good.
I keep telling myself that anyway.
But mostly, I was left with the feeling that it somehow wasn't real - or complete.
It was kind of like having an intense craving for prime rib and all the fixin's... but ending up with a McDonald's' Happy Meal instead.
Yeah, your belly's full and you've had enough to eat, but it's only make-do and a stop-gap measure while waiting for the real thing.
Maybe that's just me....or maybe it's how we all feel after all the wind-up leading to the holidays... and the inevitable let-down of emotions afterwards.
I don't know.
All I know is that once The Boy heads off with his mum this morning, to spend some time with his grandma in Melbourne, I just want to cherish the quiet time - and catch up on reading blogs.
Oh... and maybe I'll eat some of this leftover Christmas cake too...
With a giant dollop of Brandy custard. ;)