One of our relatives recently spent some time in the hospital after suffering a heart attack. Thankfully many relatives live close enough to visit him. I wish we could do the same. But right now we are sending our love from afar and keeping him in our thoughts.
I was deeply saddened by the news. And, thankfully, was able to quickly find a Christmas movie for our kids to watch while I processed the information.
A day after I heard the news myself, I talked with our son about it. While it may not be the right decision for everyone, I decided to talk with our son about his elderly relative because I wanted him to know why I was sad, on the phone with relatives more often than normal and why I may seem a bit preoccupied. While hospitals and heart attacks are not topics I had planned to talk about this holiday season, I think it is important for our kids to know that even though the holidays are filled with lots of joy, sometimes they are also filled with sadness and a huge range of other emotions.