Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Merry Christmas, 2009

Merry Christmas!
I put off writing this letter because I didn’t have anything worth sharing. My wonderful sister-in-law Wanda had warned me that the second Christmas alone is worse than the first, and it proved to be true. Last year, I had adrenaline, busyness, friends, and family to help me through, but this year the reality finally set in.

Other years, I’d have my tree up and decorated the day after Thanksgiving, but this year it took two weeks longer, and the rest of the decorations took another week. Fortunately, I had already done most of my shopping, so I was more prepared than I thought.

Last night, my sister-in-law Carolyn called to share her Christmas joy with me. She had been to the VA hospital in Reno to visit her husband, my brother Ken Horn, who is doing much better than expected. He is eating more, is putting some weight back on, and most of the time has control of his muscles.

Ken dropped a magazine on the floor, and managed to bend down and pick it up. Not bad for someone who just a few weeks ago could move only his eyes! He doesn’t laugh, but he does get a big grin, especially when something funny happens. And when their son Eric left his room, Ken told him, “I’m not dying yet.” We can all learn from his determination, especially me.

We’re still praying for Duane Koski, my daughter-in-law Sarah’s dad. He’s in a nursing home and getting treatment and physical therapy to regain his strength. He and his family still need our prayers and God’s help.

Let’s all make this a great holiday with loved ones and remember the reason for Christmas: God sent His son to live with us and die for us so that we can be with Him forever. One of our church choir’s Christmas songs says it all, “Start at the manger, then go to the cross.” I hope and pray that you do the same, start at the manger this Christmas, then go to the cross. What a gift, feely given and received.

Merry Christmas to all, and God bless us, every one!