Debi and I skipped all the Christmas day decorating, cooking and entertaining in 2010. it was a solemn day as we waited for my mom, who was in a very deep and lasting sleep to get over that last high pass and head down into her eternal valley of rich blessing and reward. She was determined to let go of this life and did it in her own way. By the 25th she was not taking any liquids, and had been off food for ten days. Her body was shrinking before my eyes, her few sounds only moans at being moved or changed. The most wonderful nurse only needed one visit, her doctor looked and confirmed that this was what was supposed to be happening. Mom wasn't sick, but she was done. She had worn out her body, and her heart which many would say was huge, was also "enlarged" and not effective at flowing blood and oxygen to her brain, muscles and organs. Most importantly, she knew where she was going and was not hesitant in the least about getting to see her Lord.
Christmas came and went. No presents were needed. Thankfully we enjoyed the presence of God and relaxed in a quiet day when there was little to do. All that needed to be done was done already. Mom's instructions had been followed and the visitors had come, the priest had offered his prayers and anointing. On Monday my sister, Laurel came up for the day to spend some time with mom and with us. At about noon mom stopped breathing the thin mountain air and became more alive ever before. Her body quit and her spirit leaped into the awesome presence of almighty God.
Now we could celebrate, and we did. No matter the phone calls to notify family, the coroner sending the sheriff and the sheriff having the paramedics come to make the "declaration". Her home was not empty but full. Filled with grateful family for the long and purposeful life lived. Filled with precious memories of many other Christmases with her children and grandchildren. This world and community is still full of people she touched, children she helped in school, and those who were changed for the better by knowing this follower of Christ and servant of God.