Just Frances

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This entry was posted on Wednesday, December 26th, 2012 by Frances Ryan.
Tags: widowhood, sad, paul, food, faith, entertainment, celebrations

I managed to survive Christmas alone. I won’t lie and say that it was easy. In fact, it was so very hard. My broken heart ached all day long as I watched my Facebook feed fill up with photos of happy families and statuses about the perfect gift from the perfect spouse. Things that my own Facebook wall should have been filled with.

I’ll be honest and admit that I was jealous of all of those people with their seemingly wonderful lives. I was jealous that everyone else seemed to be so happy whilst I was all alone. By choice, but alone never-the-less.

I spent the day on the couch watching television and sulking. I stood and looked out the window from time-to-time, envious of the families out for a Christmas walk. And I cried as I remembered how happy my last Christmas with Paul was. And toward the end of the day, I had a nice video Skype chat with my parents.

But I couldn’t bring myself to cook my Christmas feast. As much as I had wanted to be strong and brave and cook a lovely meal to enjoy by candlelight at the table, my heart hurt too much to allow it. So instead, I nibbled on cheese and crackers throughout the day—and a bit of fresh fruit. Then I cooked my Christmas ham and some roast potatoes for Boxing Day instead.

No, yesterday wasn’t the Christmas I wanted, or even the Christmas I planned. And today wasn’t the Boxing Day that it should have been. But I survived both days. Somehow.

Maybe next year will be better. Maybe next year I will have met someone wonderful to spend Christmas with; or maybe I’ll just be more adept at spending time alone. After all, I’m getting a lot of practice!

I hope that you had a lovely Christmas and that your day was filled with the love of family, friends, and Christ.

[Photo is of my last Christmas with Paul. It was such a magical, beautiful day and I wish I could re-live it one more time.]


I have spent most of the past 11 years alone on Christmas. At first, it was tears, since my kids were with their dad, and I was their mom and all alone. After a few years, it got better and now I relish my alone day. Thsi year I sent the boys off, came home and put the prime rib in the oven and curled up with my 2 new cook books. Yes, it took me awhile to get to this place.

by Ant Elizabeth at 1:50am (GMT) on January 11th, 2013

I used to spend Christmas alone all the time (before I met Paul) and I was OK with it. I used to have an open house drop-in that I called an “Orphan’s Christmas” for others who were alone for the day: Divorced people who didn’t have their kids that year; single people; even a couple of elderly folks I knew. I guess it just takes on a new sorrow these days. I know it will get better and I’m sure that I will find a way to really enjoy myself on my own.

In fact, New Year’s Eve and Day were super easy on my own. I just need to transfer those happy feelings to Christmas now!

by Just Frances at 10:03am (GMT) on January 11th, 2013

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