Let’s Go Into Christmas with Grateful Hearts

Dear friends,

It’s almost Christmas. I know this is a tough time for people who are grieving the loss of the children they might have had. We also miss those who have passed away. I know I would give anything for another hug from my husband or to hear my mother laugh again. But we have to accept things as they are right now, today.

Look around you and see all the good things you do have: your health, your home, the wonderful people in your life, good food, and this beautiful earth on which we live. Just now, I looked out my window and saw wild birds having a party. Bright blue Stellar’s jays, brown-and-orange varied thrushes, and black-hooded Oregon juncos grazed on the lawn while a purple-breasted swallow swooped across the sky. A hint of blue showed through the clouds, and my Sitka spruce stood tall and strong despite decades of harsh wind, rain and frost. The winter solstice has passed, and we will be getting more daylight every day. There is much to be grateful for.

Yes, we are surrounded by people who have children when we don’t. It’s easy to resent them. Don’t. Love them, and love their children. Be glad they are here. If you are meant to be a parent, you will, but meanwhile, don’t blind yourself to everything good in this season of light and joy.

I wrote the words above ten years ago, in December 2011, but they are still true.

One year ago, I pondered whether Joseph was childless by marriage because Mary already had a child fathered by the Holy Spirit and, at least in the Catholic version, they didn’t have any kids together, or whether Jesus couldn’t be a dad because he was God and had other plans. I must have been hitting the eggnog. But it’s something to ponder. Click here to read the whole post.

I was also talking about COVID. Who knew we would still be wearing masks and worrying about the virus? Are you staying home again this year because of the extra-contagious Omicron variant? I hope you stay well and that if the virus does hit you, it comes and goes quickly.

I mentioned that I had just had an online chat with the Childless Elderwomen/aka Nomo Crones, hosted by UK childlessness guru Jody Day. We have been Zooming for over a year now, and we met again yesterday (today in Australia time). It was an amazing talk that started with the topic “Spiritual Malnutrition” and took many fascinating turns. You can watch the video here. [Side note: bangs or no bangs???] One of the things we agreed on was that we older women would like to be available to help younger people who are in the throes of their childless dilemma. Check out Jody Day’s Gateway Women site for ways to network with other childless women.

The book Love or Children: When You Can’t Have Both, had just come out. Read about the book here. https://childlessbymarriageblog.com/2020/12/09/announcing-love-or-children-when-you-cant-have-both/ The book is made up of posts from this very blog with some added introductions from me. So, in a way, it’s your book, too. Grab a copy here.

They’re talking about snow here on the Oregon coast. It would be a nice change from floods and mud. Wherever you are and whatever the weather, Merry Christmas, and may God bless you all.

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9 thoughts on “Let’s Go Into Christmas with Grateful Hearts

  1. Love you, Sue! I am also still a fan of Jody Day, and of Lisa Manterfield. Thinking of you all, wishing you happy holidays, so grateful that you all do what you do. Oh and I love your latest book!


  2. I think you hit the nail on the head when you mentioned watching winter birds and nature in action. Its straightforward simplicity somehow soothes the soul and puts certain things in perspective. I miss my mom and the babies I lost, but it is juxtaposed with other gratitudes now rather than just feeling loss and sadness like I used to. Thank you for your wisdom and words. I hope you have a lovely holiday. Merry Christmas.


  3. As always Sue, you are the voice of reason. I spend a great deal of time filtering angry and petty thoughts from the kindness I want to exude. Partly it is my toxic in-laws who are cruel in crafty ways. But mostly it’s my decision to react the way I do that causes me problems.

    I’ve also been spending time fearing for the future – forgetting that my assumption that I will live to a great old age is only an assumption. Better to find happiness today and chase that feeling, letting the future unfold how it will.

    Yesterday was lovely. I drank good coffee, ate good food, I enjoyed a favorite past time at a favorite place. I found satisfaction at my clean kitchen. I purchased a stack of reading material, planned some future meals, and later enjoyed creative thoughts as I walked the aisles of a hardware store paint section. I ate an amazing burger and saw beautiful Christmas lights on the drive home. I watched a favorite tv show while eating the last cupcake and fell asleep happy. Aside from all the joy I get from food – I think I need more days like this.

    Thanks for all these resources. I plan to dive deep in the new year. You are helping me a great deal.


    • That sounds wonderful, Anon S. I have had a very nice holiday season, too, taking time for me when I need to and reaching out to those whose connections I treasure. I’m so glad Childless by Marriage is helping you.


  4. Out of interest: in the Protestant tradition (or at least mine, which is Lutheran), Mary and Joseph did have children of their own after Jesus was born.


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