All I Want for Christmas… Is YOU.

So, it’s one week until Christmas.  Like I mentioned in my earlier post, Andrew and I are trying our hardest and best to give Chase the greatest Christmas ever.  We have been decorated, finished shopping, wrapped and ready for weeks now.  We took Chase to see Santa more than a few times (and he will see him again this Saturday when the Elmont Engine #3, where Tanner was made honorary chief in 2010, comes to visit him at his best friend’s house).  We keep adding on little “extras”,  (oh, I really wanted to get Chase a tractor, what’s one more gift…) and we are preparing for our family Christmas Eve dinner.  We will set up the video camera so that we can capture Chase’s sure-to-be priceless face Christmas morning, and we will smile for pictures and celebrate with friends and family. 

But it’s all still not right.  On the inside, we are torn apart.  We are not happy, we don’t even really want to celebrate.  This is just so difficult.  If Tanner were here, surely we would be over the moon with excitement, joy, celebration, happiness…  without him it feels like we’re pretending.  Pretending is so painful.  When does it get better?  This is our second Christmas without him… I can’t imagine ever.

We have Tanner’s Christmas artwork hanging, his stocking is hung with ours, his ornaments are on the tree and we will put letters that we wrote to him in his stocking (which we started to do last year).  I got a great exciting gift for Andrew, and I know he is excited about the gift he bought for me.  …But there is only one thing either of us really want, and no matter what, no matter when, no matter what star I wish upon, I can never ever have that gift… I wish for my Tanner for Christmas.  I wish to hold him in my arms, to smell his sweet hair, to kiss his perfect lips.  I wish to hold his hand, to sleep nose to nose again, to tickle his toes, to count his freckles.  I just miss every single inch of his perfect little self.  Why isn’t he here?

The sad thing is, I’m not alone in feeling like this.  So many of Tanner’s little friends passed away this year, last year, the year before… pediatric cancer is robbing us of our babies, of our dreams, of our happiness, of their lives.  I just cannot believe how many lives pediatric cancer affects.  Why aren’t people screaming from the rooftops “SOMEBODY STOP PEDIATRIC CANCER! SAVE OUR BABIES!!”  That’s what I feel like doing.  That’s what I hope I’m doing when you all read this…

I’m sending out PEACE this Christmas, to everyone, but especially to anyone who has a child in heaven.  I’m sending out peace to the parents of heaven’s newest angels, the children and teachers from Sandy Hook Elementary School.  How difficult this Christmas must be for them… I think about how Tanner went through so much, so many surgeries, so much chemotherapy, radiation, sickness, suffering… and those sweet babies just went to school that day.  How impossibly difficult that must be for those parents to accept.  How I wish they weren’t joining this horrible club of bereaved parents.

One of the best ways I know how to cope is by helping other children with cancer and their families.  In just this past week, The Lexiebean Foundation sent out financial assistance to _6 families_ to help with holiday bills – along with presents, baskets of gifts for siblings, and HOPE.  We send hope for those families, all the families we help, and all the families battling this horrible disease called pediatric cancer. Hope for a peaceful (when it can’t be happy, may it be peaceful) season, a healthy new year, and many happy memories for many years to come.  May this new year bring more research, more awareness, and more cures for pediatric cancer.


Tanner’s Momma

tanner sleeping

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  1. Please try to be happy and please reflect on the times you spent with Tanner as priceless and look forward to the amazing memories you’ll be making with Chase. God bless you, The Falabella’s and all the amazing little warriors and their families. May a healing spirit find you all, touch you on the shoulder and guide you to better days ahead.

    Comment by Vanessa on December 19, 2012 at 5:46 pm

  2. Love you Melissa! “Pretending” hopefully will turn into true happiness. Chase needs that, you’re a good Momma. You’re doing everything right! Tanner smiles……

    Comment by Mara on December 22, 2012 at 11:24 am

  3. Melissa, you put into words on how i feel. I miss my little Jessica so very much. Instead of her watching all of the Christmas shows i have to bring the music to her. I have to try to be happy for Matthew and Emily’s sake. Even tnough i just want to sleep the day away.

    Comment by Denise on December 22, 2012 at 12:52 pm

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