Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Christmas Day

After thought and a little time...
I'm back
Much sooner than I thought.
You cannot imagine how much all your kind words helped.
I cried a lot the first night.
I have to say...I was not crying for Shannon.
She is having a great Christmas with her Dad today.
She no longer has pain.
No one can hurt her.
She was so easily hurt by other's words.
Not that people wanted to hurt her...but 
her sister was awful to her for no reason.
She could say things that just hurt her straight to her soul.

I tried to tell her that she was so much the better person than her sister.
That she was such the greater person and not to care what her sister said or thought.

But she was always, always hurt by her.

A sister who only caused her grief....a sister that only came to see her 
three times while she was ill this last year...and only stayed a few minutes and in 
those minutes always said something that made everything worse.

She would yell at her on the phone that she was going to die.
I would rush over to pick up the pieces to assure her that she was not going to.
That she was good and so many loved her.
Which they did.

I would say that now her sister will have to live the rest of her life knowing what 
she did to her.
But those kind of people never realize the pain they've caused.

Now...on to this Christmas....I cried
the other night thinking that I had no one in my life to share pretty things with.

Shannon always had time for me to rattle on about my favorite Christmas movie
or what thing I wanted to make.

We used to love to go shopping together.
Not for big things but for little things that made us happy.

I so regret all the times I was too busy with work to go have fun with her.

I'd give anything to have that time back.

Then when I did have time...she was too ill to go.
And we only had promises of when we'd go again.

Never to happen.

But today after reading so many thoughtful comments from those I know 
through the blog and those who tell me they've read
for years and just now are commenting on how much they enjoy my blog and to encourage me.
I realize I do have someone to share the little things with.
All of you.
You care...about my little ideas...my plans that sometimes don't come to be and
those that sometimes do get accomplished.

I worked yesterday at Pier 1 till close.
I had looked forward to it earlier in the week, thinking everyone would be in a good mood.

I have to say I dreaded it when I got ready yesterday.
But I put on a new red scarf and went in.

One of the girl's had brought cream cheese with pepper jelly to share with all.

That was so nice.
Shannon and I were to have that for Christmas Eve so I thought of her as I ate it.
I thanked Lee for bringing it but she'll never know how much it really meant to me.
That I took a bite for Shannon each time I ate. 

I thought the shoppers would be fun to work with.
I was wrong...most were desperate.

The amateurs were definitely out.

I did have a new customer that came in that I had only met last week.
She and her husband had just moved to OKC and were furnishing a new place.
She came in and bought some flowers on clearance that I loved yesterday.
Only I loved them in the store, everyone else thought them ugly.
But she loved them. We immediately had hit it off because we both like the same things.

There were a few that came in looking for last minute stocking stuffers.
Some a gift for a sudden house guest.

But then there were the men that came in who obviously didn't want to put 
any thought into a gift for their wife or girlfriend.

They just wanted to buy anything and be done with it.
They'd put it off till the last minute and were put out that they had to do it at all.

They'd only come in Pier 1 because they'd seen the mall parking lot was so awfully full and 
our's by comparison was practically empty.

One guy came in asking for measuring spoons in such a hateful way.
I asked what colors were in her kitchen.
He said he hadn't noticed...she'd just said get her measuring spoons.
She was his girlfriend.

I tried to direct him to the nicest ones.
He bought the cheapest and gaudiest.
If a measuring spoon can be gaudy...yes...they can.

I said to him..."You make me glad I don't have a husband."

Lee gasped and then laughed.
After he left she said she couldn't believe I'd said that.

But all those men made me glad I don't have anyone like that who went out at the very last 
possible moment to buy just anything. And was mad about it.
Amazing how some men can be middle aged and still not get the 
true meaning of Christmas like Charlie Brown learned so easily and 
has taught us all for years and years.

After I got off work...I went to my friend Deidra's to help her move something 
into her house. She is moving back to the neighborhood.

I then rushed to Walmart to pick up a frozen pizza for me in case I got snowed in today
and to get some special canned food for the dogs. 

It was a mad house there.
I noticed police cars in the parking lot just outside the main doors.

Not lights flashing but police standing around by the doors.

I went in it and as I grabbed a cart a man yelled in my ear...
"You have ten minutes to close."
"Ten minutes to get your stuff"

That was all I needed.

I grabbed the few things I needed and was in line by three minutes to 8.
I know this because they were announcing overhead the minutes to 8.
If we were not in line by 8 we could not check out.

People were running all over the store.
I have to say it was the lowest of society.

I vowed to never ever do this again.

I was in line with crack whores and tweakers...criminals and would be criminals.
I held a place in line for a mother who was frantically trying to find 
a gift for her four year old.
She kept saying..."I told my boyfriend we have to have something. I been tellin my son that he 
must be good or Santa won't come."

She said he'd been good...so she had to find him something.
She didn't seem to have any joy in doing this.

She brought up several things and then would run back to try to find something different.
Each time she asked my opinion.

Oh...I wished I'd had enough money to just buy that kid a bunch of nice things
and send home with her.

She decided finally on a set of legos and a small monster truck.

I finally checked out about 8:15 and as I left the check out area
I was stopped and asked if they could see my receipt.

This is the first time this has happened, ever.

I said..."Oh Lord."

Just cause I was surprised.
I couldn't find my receipt...I'd stuck it in my purse.

The person checking said, "I'm sorry...we have to check everyone."



I will never go in Walmart last minute on Christmas Eve...ever again.

It was pure chaos.
It was like shopping at a high security prison.
A girl that worked there was gathering up returns and saying...
"This is hell" 
Straight out loud and I can't say I blamed her.
I told her I felt her pain..that I knew she'd be there for several more hours as I'd done it myself
last year at Target.
(this is why these stores should close at a decent time...it is so unfair to those working)

So it was utter chaos....like shopping in a security prison where the inmates are revolting.

Last time I'd seen that much chaos was at Byron's liquor store at closing time down on 23rd street.
And I'll never ever never do that again either.

People pounding on the doors to be let in for one last bottle. 

I came home and called Shannon's husband and checked on him.
He said he was exhausted.
He'd had people over all day checking on him.

He called me just before he went to bed and asked if it was normal that he 
was scared to be in the house alone.

Yes, I told him...totally normal.
It will take awhile but you will get used to it.

Right now I should be on my way to my other friend Shannon's house.
This is where I always go for Christmas.

But I wanted to just say how much you all mean to me.
Foolish as I am, I am already thinking...next year...next year.
Next year will be a nice Christmas.
I'll make this...

Isn't that precious!
The only thing I have that I can absolutely count on is making pretty things.

Trying to make my life a pretty one.
That can't be taken away from me.
So I will keep doing that and sharing.

I probably will be posting sporadically later in the week as I will be with my Mom.

Thanks for being there for me.

I hope you are having a Lovely Christmas.

I have to say I am lucky to have my Mom, sister and brother in law and my other family...
Peggy, Shannon, Haley and Heather...Jill too.

Shannon's Jeff too.
My Aunt Jane who I spoke with last night.

I will count my blessings.

Merry Christmas


Debby said...

Oh no not another loss. I am so sorry. So sad. At first I thought you were talking about your cousin/best friend. I have told you about mine that I lost. Her sister was/is terrible as well. Such a pain in my sweet cousin's life. Then when she passed my cousin talks about how they were so close. Today (it has almost been two years since she passed) she is posting on FB with my cousin's picture as hers.
You know I don't like Walmart any time of the year. I can't believe how depressing that had to be for you. Then to see the woman buying the gifts at the last minute without any thought. There are so many donations for children that she could have gone to.
So sorry about your experience at your job. Except for the jelly, hah. Love what you said to that man. Made me laugh out loud. You do have many close relationships and all of us on here. Try to make the best out of today. Hoping and praying all goes well for your mom. So so sorry about your friend. You know she is dancing with Jesus......but it doesn't help when your heart hurts. (((((HUGS))))

Anonymous said...

Merry Christmas, Dear Lady. You have so many more friends than you know. We love your blog because you put so much of yourself into it. We're here for you, though you don't know us. All my best during this tough, tough time.

Jennifer @ Town and Country Living said...

Nita, I remember when you wrote about working at Target last year. I've been reading your blog ever since. I am so sorry for the loss of your friend. True friends can be hard to come by and even harder to lose. I love that you always manage to rebound and see the positive things in otherwise bleak situations. You have a lot of inner strength. I wish I lived closer to you ... I think I would enjoy getting to know you better. :) Have a blessed Christmas.

TiKiMOOSE said...

Merry Christmas Nita!
Your blog always seems to make me tear up. They really need to make a movie from this blog, I'm sure it would be a hit. Glad to hear you are going to other Shannon's for dinner...are you going to take pictures? She always decorates so nice!
Your pal,

The Comfort of a Safe Place said...

I'm so glad that you decided to return to blogging early! That's good. Good for us and good for you!

I love the snow globe cake - how cute that would be.

"The only thing I have that I can absolutely count on is making pretty things. Trying to make my life a pretty one. That can't be taken away from me. So I will keep doing that and sharing."

I'm so glad to hear you say those words, Nita! That's called purpose! And it's a wonderful purpose, too!

Take care...of yourself, your friend's husband, your mom and I'll continue to pray for all of you.


janzi said...

~So many kind thoughts from us in blogland, will be with you as you manage these days in your loss.. I do hope that christmas was not too hard for you in your grief.. I hope your visit to your family and friends cheer you up tomorrow- thinking of you at this time, and hugs a million coming your way.. Janzi

Lottie said...

Nita, just wanted to let you know others are thinking of you today! We miss loved ones especially during the holiday season. Tears our heart into sometimes. I worked retail many years during Christmas and the last minute shoppers were never nice. Hope your day is going well now.

Denise said...

My God Nita! I can't believe that I am once again this year telling you to "hang in there." I am so sorry for your loss. I had'nt told you, but I was already so impressed that you were having such a good Christmas after last year. I have to tell you something....my Mother died in 2009, and I haven't had a decent Christmas since. I hate it now. Not the meaning of it, just all the jolly celebrating. Like you, we have had a lot of accumulating grief in our family even beyond loosing my mother. I know how difficult it makes it to remain positive. You have always been an inspiration to me. How you are able to seemingly rise above the pain I know that you are feeling.
All I can say...is I know that this makes us better people. It makes us realize how important it is to be kind to others and appreciate each day. Your friends sister will be sorry some day, either in this life or after this life, for the way she treated her sister. What a miserable life she must lead.
Your mother is going to be just fine! I'll be thinking about you and praying for her on the 27th. Please let us know how her surgery goes.
Best of my love. Hugs to you!

Cozy Little House said...

Nita, you are such a beautiful and caring soul. I too am glad I don't have a husband. For nothing is more lonely than being in the house with someone you no longer love and have come to fear. Your post was an account of what our world has become. Yet, it was profoundly beautiful to read. I am here. Maybe we need to start the "50 something society of women alone at Christmas." Keep the faith, stay out of Hell Mart, and know that though I've never met you, you are my friend and I love you.

Connie said...

Nita, you are special to all of us that read your blog and you've been a favorite since I discovered you long ago. You have talent and vision. A new year is beginning and good things await you.
Hoping your Mom's surgery goes well and I'll say a prayer for you.

Dewena Callis said...

Nita, I have thought of you throughout the day and am so encouraged to read your post today because Jan who commented earlier is so right about your desire to make things pretty is called purpose. I loved that and hope you can remember that. You bring so much beauty to all of us so I can just imagine how you must also do it to your family members and friends, just as you did to Shannon's life, even helping her have her rooms pretty for Christmas.

And next Christmas you will have more opportunity to beautify and enjoy, but also Valentine's Day and our Sundays when we look forward to your house tours, and so many others.

And you make life beautiful everyday for those weenies!

Amy @MaisonDecor said...

Nita, funny I left a comment and it told me an error had occurred...so I am going ahead with my thoughts again: Nita, you see beauty in the smallest of things, and we can see these things through your eyes...thats a gift. Merry Christmas.

Donna W. said...

I’m so sorry to hear the sad news about your friend Shannon. What a horrible shock to loose someone so suddenly. I love Christmas but I think there is always an element of sadness during the holidays. I have never lost someone at this time of year but I’m always acutely aware of the absence of people that have passed. It’s a bittersweet feeling because I treasure their memories yet ach to have them back. To get out of this funk, I get in the car and sing at the top of my lungs (window closed much to the relief of passing motorists and half the county) along with Darlene Love as she wails out “Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)”. Singing loudly may not be your cup of tea but I think you will find a way to cope. You have been a good friend and the spirits of your loved ones would want you to be happy as you have made them happy. So don’t give up. It’s obvious to anyone reading you blog that your home gives you great joy. Your Christmas decorations are absolutely gorgeous. You inspire all of us more than you’ll ever know not just you décor but your heartfelt writing and sense of humor.
I loved what you said to the man buying the measuring spoons. My advice to his girlfriend would be to run as fast as you can and don’t look back. I believe that the truest indication of a person’s character is how they treat people that serve them. Like mandatory military service, everyone should be required to work on the other side of the counter. I’ve done my share and learned a lot but I suppose some of these boneheads wouldn’t get it.
Nita, in spite of everything; have yourself a Merry Little Christmas.

Katie @ Wildwood Creek said...

The only thing certain in life is that there will be ups and downs, and by the grace of God we'll get through the hard times. You have such a gift for creating beauty. Please continue to share your gifts with us.

Lynn said...

Merry Christmas to you Nita! We will completely understand if you take some time for yourself. You need it. But don't leave us hanging too long or we will worry about you - immensely. We too had another death in the family this Christmas season but like your strong attitude we know they are no longer in pain and having a lovely time celebrating from above. Love your blog and I hope your mother's surgery is successful. Keep your chin up.

Cynthia Myers said...

Nita, I am so glad to read this post and see your spunk as returned. I love you letting that guy know how awful he was in such a funny way. Truly, you inspire and make so many people happy. I'm glad that you will continue making things pretty and entertaining us with your "real" stories. You shoot straight from the hip and tell it like it is and we make us laugh and/or cry while doing it.
I thought about you many times today, wondering how you were but the tone of this post makes me remember how strong you are and once again you've gotten up after being knocked down. You are amazing! xoxo - Cindi

vintage girl at heart said...

Prayers for Shannon and her Husband Family and friends she leaves behind. Prayers for YOU. Prayers for your Mom and her surgery to go smoothly. You have been through so much and I pray that you have strength and the spirit to endure all of it. Finding JOY in the pretty things as you fluff your nest is priceless. It is hard not to let this cruel world and cruel people change us. You have a light that shines never forget that even during hard times. Snuggle your fur babies and keep them close..they are what is good in this world.

S said...

Again, I am so sorry for the loss of your friend. It's hard to believe her sister got her 'jollies' trying to make her sister miserable. Her heart must be full of misery herself, day and night, to let hate seep out like that. Thank God your friend had you to cheer her up and make her feel good about herself again. You write beautifully. I wish I could say things as well as you do, it's truly a gift. I can imagine the things you say when you write. I hope and pray that you and your friends husband will both feel God's love getting you through this pain and loss...hugs, Sally

Cyndia said...

I'm so sorry you have lost your friend. She knew how much you cared for her though, and there is nothing better than love.

I read what you said about the measuring spoons, and laughed out loud. I remember working at Lane Bryant on Christmas Eve and helping the men as they came in at the last to buy gifts for their women. One guy wanted clothes for his wife and when I asked her size, he said "about your size". I was an 18/20. The day after Christmas a very angry petite woman came in to return those clothes. She was a size 2 and her husband was clueless as to the size of his own wife. I hope she divorced his butt. Like you, I'm glad not to have a man like that in my life.

24 Corners said...

Merry Christmas Nita...Ginger and I send our love and good wishes for your mom's perfect recovery and also for your heart's recovery, so sorry for the loss of your friend...it's always difficult to lose someone but it's even more so this time of year. You and yourblog bring so much joy to so many, and I hope that it will bring joy to you as well as you share your loves and favorites with all of us.
Hugs to you and the pups...
xo J~

Patti Willey said...

Yay! She's back! Whoa what a day you had. Tears welled in my eyes when your colleague shared the cream cheese spread you so enjoy! But boy the rest your day went South! Thank you anyway for jotting down what you feel, we'll read every word, and most of all enjoy your touch of "pretty" you give to the world. That snow globe cake is precious! If you truly know how to make one I would be amazed at your talent. Keep living your dream. Hugs. Oh, so nice of you to keep checking on Jeff, sounds like he appreciates you. Good job Nita

Jennifer Grenko said...

Dear Nita, I read and related to your entire post. I like the way you write, honestly, your true feelings. Your home and decorations are beautiful and I admire that you put your best foot forward even when you feel pain. Things will get better. I lost my grandmother and mom and miss them so much at Christmas. If I were your friend and nearby, I would shop with you and craft with you! I am the only one in my family who really gets into the Christmas spirit with all my heart and I feel unappreciated for trying to make it nice for everyone else. It's a lonely feeling but I keep thinking they would miss it if I stopped. Shannon is with you in spirit and always will be. I love what you said to the man in Pier One! I bet you see his GF bring those back! Merry Christmas from a new friend! Jennifer

lynn said...

You always make me think about new things. I love your blog and your dogs and your love for others--you are a special person. God may be using your kindness in a way that is painful (when you lose someone) but is such a blessing to those in your life. He will give you the strength you need to continue and you will be blessed by each person you love. Consider this a huge hug to you, your mom and all 7 dogs!

Jan said...

Nita you were blessed to have had Shannon as long as you did and she to have you. God, will take good care of her and reward you for such kindness. I'm sorry for the Wal Mart situation I feel your pain. I pray your new year will be wonderful and we will be there every step of the way!

Mary MG said...

You do make everything pretty, and I love that you do! Creating things that give pleasure to others and yourself is good therapy for you. Your blog is also pretty, gives others pleasure, and is therapy for you. I think you have a beautiful soul (or whatever you want to call it) that looks for beauty in things, animals, and people, and in turn you give 100% to those things, animals,and people. That is why it hurts so much to loose any of them. You become so invested. Creativity and loss go hand in hand, as any artist knows. I hope you continue to create, cherish, and remember all that is beautiful in your love.

Jann said...

Dear Nita,
Christmas is always a time that runs well and smoothly or deperate and bumpy. I grew up in the bumpy. I am so sorry for the loss of your dear friend. No one can say anything that lessens your heart for her...and especially at Christmas. I am away from my friends and daughter this Christmas and it is very hard. And I am deperately sorry for the anquish and hatefulness that her sister laid upon her, for what I believe to be a long, long time. It has as well hurt and stung you. My Mother is the EXACT same way. It has hurt me from long, long ago and yet she does not understand why she hasn't a friend, her daughter and son do not want to be near her ever. And truly there is nothing we can do about that but pray for her soul.....and change our lives from when we were raised. I am sending you warmth, hugs and appreciation for your sorrow and pain, your heartfelt loss. We all go through and experiencing loss and being alone and yet pull together and survive, with the love of other friends and furred children. Sometimes I hear people joke and question about women on blogs and how they spend time writing to people they do not know. How foolish those people are, not to have the knowledge of souls helping souls....regardless of time nor distance. Be well of heart and mind my dear as your darling friend would want that for you so deeply. Carry her always with you and let the positive things of her life, grant you peace and warmth.
Huggers from idaho dear one....

sheri said...

Nita, I couldn't even find the words to reply to your last post. I am so very sorry for your loss. But you are right -- Shannon is with her Dad. It's just that she will be sorely missed by those left behind. And you are also right in that you have many people to share your life with and we are so glad to have you in our lives. You bring lots of joy to those of us who follow your blog. I always feel like I stopped in at a friend's house for a cup of coffee and a little chat about how the day went! Sending hugs across the miles,

Pam @ Frippery said...

Take care and be good to yourself. Time heals.

Mike said...

The one puppy pulling the other puppy's tuck is the cutest thing ever.

Blogging tips