PTSD, Traumas, Tragedies, and… Christmas

I was standing in the backyard early this morning, the way I do most mornings when I let our two dogs out to do their business, when a man in the neighbor’s yard on the other side of our privacy fence said hello.

I remembered talking to him several months ago, when he was here from Colorado visiting his relatives who live in that house. So I walked over to the fence and asked how he’s doing. I’m okay, he said. Are you here for Christmas? I asked. No, he said, I’m here for my cousin’s funeral.

Oh, I’m so sorry, I said.
My cousin was the one who was shot and killed a couple of weeks ago, he said.

Then I knew who he meant. A man only in his thirties, the father of eight children, who was killed at his job, where he worked as a restaurant manager. It was a murder-suicide. It happened less than a mile from our house.

I hadn’t known that relatives of the murdered man lived right next door. Is this why our big dog kept going over to the fence between our two houses and crying yesterday, every time I let her out into the yard? Could she sense the sorrow coming out of that house?

No children live next door, but there were several children playing in the yard yesterday afternoon, which would have been after the funeral. The little girl I spoke to yesterday, when she went to retrieve a ball that had gone behind our fence — was she one of the dead man’s children?

Last Sunday, our church pastor said that this town is too small for all the murders and suicides that happen here. But even one murder and one suicide is too many.

Yesterday I wrote a post, inspired by a post I had read on another blog, about reaching out to the hurting who are “lying at the gate”. I wrote in my post about the saddest, hardest Christmas I had as a child. Eleven people liked it. One person commented on it. But, before I went to bed last night, I made that post private, because I thought that my personal childhood Christmas story was too sad for this festive time of year.

Then I woke up at sunrise, I took our two sweet rescue dogs outside to do their potties, and I learned that I have a hurting, broken family literally at my gate. Dear Lord Jesus, please help me to bless them, the way my siblings and I needed someone to reach out and bless us, all those Christmases ago…

I have taken my previous post off of the private setting.

For anyone reading this who is hurting this Christmas — my heart goes out to you. Here’s a big grandma ((HUG)). I wish I could give you a real hug. And some milk and cookies, too. If you don’t mind gluten free. 😁


Photo credit: Adam P.

16 thoughts on “PTSD, Traumas, Tragedies, and… Christmas

  1. Sue Cass December 21, 2019 / 11:15 am

    I have said for several years that the Lord will use our painful experiences to help other hurting souls. He’s proven that through me and through you and others. May the Lord show you the way He can use you for this hurting family. God bless you and Merry Christmas.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Lady Quixote December 21, 2019 / 11:20 am

      Thank you, Sue. God’s blessings and Merry Christmas to you, too. πŸ’˜

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Renee/Heart Tokens December 21, 2019 / 11:21 am

    I didn’t get to see that post. So sorry! And so sorry to hear of this murder/suicide, and a person leaving behind children…I read a post a few weeks back from someone who is still in the grieving process. They said (my paraphrasing) they wished people would talk about their loved ones this time of year who have already passed and tell their stories…I have been working on a sad post of my own…I haven’t had the time to finish it, but it’s not about a merry Christmas. I was even pondering myself for the same reasons, whether I needed to post it or not…if I even get to finish before Christmas.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Lady Quixote December 21, 2019 / 11:33 am

      Aww, Renee, I’m sorry you have been feeling sad. I hope you are able to finish your post, I want to read it.

      I made my previous post public again. But it is sad, so you may not want to read it.


      Liked by 2 people

      • Renee/Heart Tokens December 21, 2019 / 10:15 pm

        It’s been 36 years since this dear person passed. I’m glad you made the post public. Your story really counts and will help someone else! God Bless!

        Liked by 2 people

  3. Looking for the Light December 21, 2019 / 12:43 pm

    The same happened in the house behind us and the kids ran to our house, it was horrific. we didn’t know them. God has a plan, we don’t understand, we just have to believe.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Lady Quixote December 21, 2019 / 1:29 pm

      Oh how sad. I don’t even have words. God bless you and those children.


  4. blindzanygirl December 21, 2019 / 2:06 pm

    I an glad that you made this post. It is so true that there are many hurting people at Christmas. My mom died on November 16, and yesterday my 50 year old marriage ended.n i am very alone. So yes, there are some very sad tales around at Christmas. In my own case it is God Who will get me through. I am blind and in a wheelchair from cancer. I will look for your post.

    Liked by 5 people

    • Lady Quixote December 21, 2019 / 5:03 pm

      Oh, my dear. What you said here made me want to cry and praise the Lord, both. Yes, God will see us through, even the worst of times, when we cling to Him!

      Liked by 4 people

    • ibikenyc December 24, 2019 / 9:24 am

      I’m so sorry for your losses and loneliness. It’s good you have your faith.

      I wish I could do more, but I will be praying for you.


      Liked by 1 person

    • Renee/Heart Tokens January 2, 2020 / 11:14 am

      Oh my goodness Lorraine! My prayers are with you! Sorry to hear about your marriage. I knew about your mom. πŸ™πŸΌπŸ™πŸΌπŸ™πŸΌ

      Liked by 1 person

  5. seekingdivineperspective December 21, 2019 / 9:08 pm

    Oh my, talk about God’s timing …! I’m glad you’re there for that family “lying at the gate.” I’m sure the Lord will give you a way to bless them, even if it’s just giving them a listening ear.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Anna Waldherr December 22, 2019 / 12:34 pm

    You have a loving heart, Lady Quixote. Wishing you and yours a wonderful Christmas! May all those who do not yet know Him, find their consolation in Christ. ❀

    Liked by 1 person

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