Merry Christmas!

 

We attended a holiday party with some colleagues tonight and it was very lovely.

Yet this picture from the party stirs up a certain sadness, a certain nostalgia.  A certain era of our family is only in our memories. This picture shows us with only A6 and H3. They are the only ones going with us to our next post.

Missing are our four young adult sons.

We’ll all be under one roof this Christmas, and for that I’m extremely grateful.  Being all together is a rarity now. Each time we are I feel like it is an unexpected gift, one to treasure, one which I may never have again.

We’ve raised our children all over the world. Yes, they have some roots in Florida but not all of them consider it “home.”  We’ve raised our children with the normalcy of moving every few years. It is unlikely that any of them will settle in one place for long, much less all in the same area.

Hubby’s parents have downsized through the years, and yet they have a large table in their open floorplan small home which seats ten. That is enough for them, each of their four children and their spouses.  I would need a table to seat fourteen were I to have all my children and their spouses together for the holidays. My heart is heavy, because it seems unlikely that a day like that will come when we are all together in one place once they each have families of their own.

We may have given them the gift of experiencing the world, a broad view of what life can hold. At the same time it has meant sacrifices for both us and them, sacrifices of roots and place and future close proximity.

I’m happy for the lives my older children are living. I’m so very proud of them.

And seeing this picture reminds me that, yes, they really are adults now.

Things in our family really have shifted.