I am approaching Christmas this year with mixed feelings. It is so lovely to be home and to feel part of the build up to Christmas. Seeing my lovely niece and nephew and how they are growing (and being naughty) and developing is an absolute pleasure. Work is going fine and I think there is a lot that I can do to make a difference in that team and in the lives of my clients. It looks like The Mister has a job which is good news. Church is fine – a bit evangelical at times but I’ll manage with that. The pleasure of having a quieter life with much less traveling is blissful. My stress levels are considerably less than they were when I was living in Leeds.
And yet, I feel sad. Last Christmas I hoped that we would have a baby of our own; that we would be able to experience the pleasure of a little baby and the excitement of a first Christmas together. Fifteen months of trying to get pregnant has left me despondent and bereft. I find it hard to be around people who are pregnant because I constantly feel ‘why them’ and ‘why not me’. Facebook reminds me insistently of my monthly failure, whether that be with adverts for maternity clothes or baby toys, or the constant barrage of status updates with pictures of scan photos, new-born photos and people going on and on about their ‘bumps’… “**** is going out today with her husband and bump”…. Well of course you are going out with your bump, you couldn’t bloody well go out without it could you?
Christmas this year will be mixed emotions. I will find whether this month has been another failure on my birthday. Great. Another year older and another month when I am not pregnant.
So, at Christmas I come to think of that gift, the child who changed the world. The incarnate God who came as a baby, the best gift the world could ever have; that baby who brings good news and hope to all who believe in him, the one who allegedly ‘gives good gifts’. I hope that this God will give us a gift of a baby this year. However, much as I try to experience this God I largely feel his absence, his lack of intervention and a distinct lack of hope. Who knows? All I am sure of is that I am not really looking forward to Christmas.