My husband asked me if its okay with me that he and our children will be spending christmas holidays with my inlaws. I’ve been sick for more than a year now. I have lupus and RA and having constant multiple joint pains and having fatigue most of the time. Its a 1 hour flight and 2 hrs drive going there. I wanted to go but my body cannot. His mother will be very sad if they will not be able to be there. I said its okay with me but its going to be a very sad christmas for me as it will be the first time i will not be with them. Im having second thought. I need them to be with me but i dont want to be selfish not to let them go. I know my kids will be having a great time there especially with their cousins. Thank you for your time. God bless.
I am so sorry that you cannot go with them because of your health.
Is there any way they can go a day or two after Christmas? They can be home with you and then go to your in-laws. When we lived a 9 hour drive away from our family, that is what we did. We had Christmas at home and then drove to see family. It is not fair that they are away, especially at Christmas.
Could you possibly have a family Christmas on another day? Growing up in a divorced family, this was the norm for us.
I have spend many Christmases without my husband over the years. I am sorry you are facing this because I know the emptiness that seems to consume the season when we are alone. If you don’t mind me asking, do you have a return date for your family? And what are the ages of your children? Some suggestions I have that are always helpful for me are sort of age and date related.
One thing that I can say that’s not date related is that in some ways, the Christmases I have spent alone have been more Christ focused. I have found joy in simply being with Jesus on His birthday. Mass was the highlight of the day. Offering Jesus the gift of my total concentration and entire heart full of sorrow was somehow very comforting. The first Christmas my husband was gone, I almost felt embarrassed and guilty that I was able to find happiness and peace. I can remember hoping and wondering if he was able to as well.
Once we had children, it was easier with him being gone on some ways but harder in many others. I know for my husband it was harder to be away at Christmas than it was for us. One thing that made it easier for him during those years was calling and talking to everyone. One year the base he was at in Kuwait was set up well enough that they had computers. We were able to use the webcam and see each other gave to face. He showed the kids that he got the presents we sent and they showed that we got the ones from him and Santa. Skype is a wonderful invention! Use it if at all possible.
Thanks. Theyll be leaving before Christmas.
Thank you for the idea.
my children are age 8, 6 and 3. thank you so much for sharing. truly we find our true joy in Christ.
Oh, they are so young! That is very hard. My heart is sad for you all.
This might be a good year for the 12 Days of Christmas. And if they don’t already, perhaps the Three Kings can visit on epiphany.
One year my husband was coming home Dec. 27th so he had Santa bring some things to him for the kids. That way they had a second Christmas with him. Maybe in your case, Santa comes to your house and the gifts they get with family are simply from them. That way you can have a special day during the Christmas season still that is reserved for just your immediate family.
For epiphany, the kings can bring some special family gift and candy for each maybe. In my family they bring chocolate coins, fruit, juice boxes, things like that. Toys, books, games are all things they have been known to bring as well.
A friend of mine’s husband did something very nice when he was away. Each night he recorded a Christmas story that he read and then emailed it home. His wife’s “job” was to give a hersheys kiss (a kiss from dad) to each child after their story from dad.
Just remember Christmas is a season after Advent and not just a single day. Celebrate that this year. I’ll be praying that it is full of unexpected blessings. And God bless you for placing your in laws feelings above your own. Offer that hurt up for the salvation of souls and for the grace to keep smiling.
Would it be possible for your husband to host his extended family at your house? Would that be too overwhelming or logistically impossible? I think it’s very sad that they would leave before Christmas when the kids could play with their cousins surely any day around that time, not on Christmas day.
Or, could the kids be there on Christmas Eve and come back to you early Christmas morning? Flights are super cheap that day anyway and you’d have your family Christmas from 1 pm onwards - which would leave you in peace to prepare the dinner haha!
Epiphany is a wonderful day to do family gift exchanges.
Remember, Christmas is not one day. It is a season that begins on the eve of Dec 24 and lasts through Candlemass. Our family has always made Epiphany the big gift giving day. Perhaps you can play a great Epiphany day for your family. Get some chalk for the priest to bless (if he does not already do that at morning Mass), bless the house, have songs and food and gifts!
I just think it is very sad that the OP’s husband is leaving her home alone to go off and be with extended family. She is the most important member of his family along with his children. I think it is disrespectful of him to not plan his trip for after Christmas so they can all be together on Christmas.
You are their mother. It is not selfish of a mother to want to be with her children (especially that young) on Christmas. I think it is selfish and thoughtless of your husband to even have suggested going without you.
As a child, I spent many a holiday with just my mother, or worse, watching my step-siblings open their mountains of presents at their grandparents house, because that was “her day”. Meanwhile, my father’s family had gotten together, and I missed precious time with my cousins, aunts and uncles, and grandparents, who both passed away very young. I still feel very estranged from that side of my family because I always had to miss every holiday when they were all together. My dad made a special Christmas time to spend with him on a different day every year, but we missed out on the larger family gathering. It would have been nothing for my mom to celebrate with us on Christmas Eve or some other day, but she insisted that Christmas night was “her day” and that was more important to her that what was right or fair to us. I do think she was selfish. Now, the OPs situation is a little different in that she is very ill, and hopefully temporarily so, but I think it’s very good of her to not want her family to miss out.
Can you Skype with them all and or FaceTime with them?
Thank you for sharing your great ideas. God bless.
Thank you… My husband trying to convince me to come but as much as i want to, I really can’t. Im mostly in bed or wheelchair. I have constant pain of 8-10 at scale. I know he wouldnt want to leave me. Its just that his parents called and was very sad especially his mother that were not spending holidays with them.
So her sadness matters more than yours? It’s just not right.
thank you. but its not possible.