Grace will be arriving for her Christmas visit a week from tomorrow, and I’m so excited! We’ve got a number of fun activities planned, including a small holiday party (she doesn’t really like big groups) and a Christmas feast. But the best part for me will be just getting to see her. As most of y’all know, my life has changed so dramatically over the past three years that I barely even recognize it any more; it’s hard to believe that it was ever as stable and predictable as my memory tells me it was. In some ways it’s better now, and in some ways worse; some aspects of my life now are so full of beauty and sweetness that they are worth all the pain and bitterness which accompanied them, yet at the same time there were aspects of beauty and sweetness in my former life which are now gone forever, never to return. But of all the things I’ve lost, there is none I feel so keenly as the loss of having Grace nearby all the time. Oh, we still text every day, and talk on the phone several times a week, and visit in person at least twice a year, but it’s not the same and never can be because I’m not the same. Change happens; seasons come and seasons go. And though it’s impossible to revisit a season once it has given way to the next, it is possible to sit with dear friends and reminisce, and to open our old books to gently touch the pressed flowers from which the perfume has long since faded.
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