Everything is so, so different now.

But, weirdly the same...

The holidays are definitely not the same. They are lacking…a lot. I was telling Missy about it…and she made a good point…Trey was the party.

He was infectious, made you want to be in a holiday mood, made you want to be better, do better, be the person he saw you as.

Yes, I decorated a lot for Christmas. But, now I’m having the hardest time even finding the motivation, at this point I’m contemplating just leaving fall decorations out until next year…it’s so much work to switch them out. Bleh.

Trey moaned and groaned about all the Christmas decorations every year…20 some boxes, four trees, and more…just for the inside. BUT if I forgot one little thing he would harp on that until I got it done, every year. Every year there were certain ornaments he would hang on the tree, a bumble bee for missy, a nurse for MaryAnn, and one for Johnny, little carpenter set for Tommy, China box for Brenda, old antique ornaments that reminded him of Frank, and Momo. An ornament from Egypt from woody and Joey…all the White House ornaments he collected over the years, and our ornaments from travels. Always had a very particular place to go, and he would move them constantly so he could see them better. Oh, and gruesomes colar, and bells.

For some reason this year I don’t want to see them, I don’t think I can deal with all of that. Part is me is like you just have to do it and get it over with, the other part is like no, take your time. So I’m stuck. And not likely to get unstuck anytime soon.

We went to the abbey today to replace the flowers, it was freezing(I wore long pants, so you know it was cold) changed out the flowers, had a moment with Trey, and then went to the crèche festival on the way out.

The crèche festival was the reason Trey and I fell in love with Mepkin in the first place. On a November YEARS ago, 15 maybe. It wasn’t as cold, they were JUST planning the columbarium. And had renderings of it. We walked the grounds, and I said if I die this is where I need to be. Trey laughed and said I’d forget about it by next week.

I never did. Every year almost we would go out, and I’d say the same thing. Stick me in the wall, I’ll be fine.

We hadn’t talked about that in years. YEARS. And when it came time I wasn’t even thinking straight, and mepkin was mentioned. It just reminded me of all those times we talked and joked about it. Trey would always pick at me asking how I knew I’d be the first to go … well because I can’t be on my own, so I better be first.

That always always stuck with Trey. When I woke up after my stroke he had some very not so nice words about me trying to be first. And as I recovered, he constantly CONSTANTLY told me I wasn’t going to be alone. (Looking back, he dropped so so so many little hints, that I was totally oblivious to)

So going to mepkin was only natural. I remember talk about getting a double niche, and that was an instant no from me. For one thing…once that sucker is closed, heck no it don’t need to be reopened…another thing…you know how particular Trey Strock was??? I ain’t sure passing over would change that! But…when the niche I picked out in the wall turned out to be 143, I knew it wasn’t supposed to be a double niche. Besides, the way Trey packed, with all that extra space there would be no room left for me.

Anyway that’s a little about us, and the Abbey.

Back to differences, but the same…

After the abbey we went to meet Tommy & Brenda for lunch. They just got back from Atlanta. Sitting there talking about the girls, and Harper’s horse show… I hadn’t gotten any pictures this time, just the one of H getting ready.

Oh, I’m getting ahead of myself. FIRST Tommy was like 🙅 HAVE WE GOT A STORY FOR YOU…

My immediate thought, probably because I’ve heard him start a conversation like that for so many years…was oh they had an adventure, and it involved food. Very first thing that popped into my head, and yes. They had a food adventure. Benton I’m sure was like oh goodness...What juicy story am I abiut to hear. But, it was food, good food. It’s weird little things like that, that really make me have to stop, and internally pinching myself so that I don’t lose it. I cannot tell you how many times, or often I’ve heard the same story, different characters, but the same story. It just really reminds me of Trey, that excitement over really the littlest things.

Back to the horse show. I hadn’t gotten any pictures. But, they’re telling us all about Harper’s show, and everything she did. And then Brenda says….all that and I didn’t get one picture. This is a very Brenda thing to do, she blames her new phone…but, well we know. She had it out, probably the whole day to take pictures…but sue forgot to push the button. All day. I could feel, and hear, and see Trey laughing so hard. I could not stop laughing. Because I could just see the whole thing in my head. Hilarious.

So having lunch with the strocks, or seeing them weekly is so so different without Trey (mostly because I won’t shut up, and I never used to talk) it’s just different. But, still very oddly the same.

In some weird way it’s very comfortable, I always feel Trey there, I see him in Timmy’s gestures, a lot. Hear him in both of them. And I hear him in my head when I’m talking a lot ‘geez Thomas, take a breath’

Something is just telling me this year I need to have a very simple holiday, and not stress about everything. And that feels OKAY. Granted I will probably break down, and end up doing something. I’m just not sure what.

We shall see. Tradition just needs to go on hold right now. 🤷🏻‍♂️