I wasn’t so sure just how it was going to go at Christmas without dad.
This past holiday season was the first one since my dad died. And I knew that it was going to be very different. For one thing, Christmas was going to be inside our home this year. And I’d be in charge of the thermostat for the first Christmas that I can remember. We’ve always gone to my mom and dad’s for the holidays. My wife’s parents come to stay inside the central air conditioning of our home at Thanksgiving and then we do Christmas at my folks. That’s the way it’s been for as long as we’ve been married. But I had never spent a Christmas without my father since I was born. After dad died, I went up to help my mom get that house on the market. We did a residential HVAC upgrade along with a few other projects. The family home and property sold for a staggering price. So then, my mom bought a small condo just a few miles from us toward the end of summer. We live down south and so my mom is doing without a gas furnace or a boiler for the first time in her life. And my dad was always the thermostat hawk and could tell if I even budged it a little when I was visiting. So this past Christmas, I was the one to happily not have to worry about any thermostat setting. That day was warm and beautiful so that meant the heat pump was silent. But mom was here with us as was my sister. It was a lovely day and we all told stories about dad. It was nice to have Christmas in my house now. As though a baton was passed.