Beyond Blue

Beyond Blue

Video: O Holy Night

This is what Christmas means to me: the return of hope, the season of joy, the spirit of love.

A very merry Christmas (and Happy Holidays, of course) to all my Beyond Blue readers!

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  • Larry Parker

    It may seem ironic given our discussions of recent days, but my favorite Christmas carol is …
    “Angels We Have Heard On High”
    (“What Child Is This” to the tune of “Greensleeves” is a close second.)
    Merry Christmas, all!

  • Nancy

    I love “O Holy Night” – it’s up there for me as a favorite. Yes, Therese, hope, love and joy. Also for me it is innocence and purity.
    My prayer is that all BBr’s and for that matter all who are not a part of this group dealing with varities of depression, all illnesses and difficult life situations, have a peace-filled, joyous day. If not with their surrounding circumstances, at the very least within their heart, mind and soul. My their spirits soar, even if just for a short reprieve. May there be moment of calm within.
    Blessings to all. Merry Christmas.

  • Nancy

    I forgot to “sign off” as Nancy L. fnjwn

  • Kay

    Merry christmas to you Therese and all BB readers and writers.
    Have experienced rare moments of peace and happiness..i hope you have too. It is a magical and spiritual time. It was lovely listening to the church bells from my terrace. I prayed for us all….

  • Chinamom

    Merry, merry Christmas, Therese and BB friends!

  • Larry Parker

    Merry Christmas, again, all! (And Happy Holidays to ALL our friends of whatever faith.)
    Since Therese has all the traditional carols covered, I started a thread on the Beyond Blue discussion group on modern (i.e., rock/soul/pop) Christmas songs.
    I’d love to know everyone’s favorites! Mine tend to be the romance at Christmas songs (often the sad ones …).

  • zana

    Merry Christmas Therese and BB wonderful ones,Was that you playing the piano? Beautifully done and nice arrangement. Timely as always. This has been a tough December to get through. Marks the 1st anniversary of the day my husband left us and my spiral downwards to my first hospitalization and the steps we’ve taken on my way to recovery. I have struggled so much with my faith this year and have been so angry at God because I have wondered where and why He had gone from me. Honestly. I stlll am not sure what He has in store and I am numb to hearing, “what doesn’t kill you make you stronger.” That song reminded of the baby Jesus and how much love his parents were feeling that morning. I didn’t have anyone to put gifts in my stocking this year so last night when I playing Santa, i suddenly was moved to write my children’s names on a pretty piece of note paper, fold it up and put in my stocking. They are my gift. Just like Mary had a hard road ahead of her, my little family and I have been climbing over boulders in our path this year. I’ve watched my them in so much pain, but not anything near what she, Joseph and Jesus had to endure. Their son, their son!… and what he did for us! That song reminded me.We celebrate his birthday. Where his lifeleads on this earth and finally, the peace that comes afterward. I may not be there yet, but I am beginning to let go and let God. my sister-in-law reminded me last night as she was telling me of a hardship she just endured, yet with everything she does, she prays. Even during the worst of times, she hands her life over to Him and He leads her to a peaceful heart and mind. I have been afraid to say, I have had wobbly legs like a baby trying to pull himself up to standing position, but I’m getting there, When I read how much faith you all have here it gives me hope that I’ll find my way again. Today is the day we start fresh, reborn again. Amen.

  • zana

    Hey Larry, Angels We Have Heard on High and Greensleeves are my two favorites , too. When I was a very little girl looong time ago. My mom says I was three and it’s the earliest memory I have, My dad and I got lost after delivering Christmas presents. We found ourselves at a convent. I don’t know why my father decided to go into the chapel, but i still remember what happened there. If you’ve ever seen the movie, “The Trouble With Angels,’ scene where Hayley Mills hides behind a pillar and marvels at the nuns singin joyfully to our Lord, that was exactly my same experience. They held candles, at the precessional and it was beautifully, but the thing that had the most impact was their smiling faces. They were so happy and the glory filling in the air was indescribable. I wanted to be a nun from that day on…until I became a teenager and changed my mind a a half a dozen times or so. Guess what songs they sang? And now , especially since my dad is gone, I tear up everytime I hear them.
    I like Silent Night,too. When my son was if 5th grade he wanted to play Christmas carols on his viola and wanted me to accompany him. My beloved big brother was in the final months of his battle with cancer. He was a fabulous pianist and his face would light up whenever he was behind the keyboard. He loved music and got all of us growing up under the same roof hooked for life. One Christmas my son thought it would be nice to play Silent Night…perhaps because it was the one I could actually keep up with him as I played guitar alongside him! My brother and I had played guitars together in his backyard during warm summer nights. He was much better than me, but by then i had showed him a few songs that I knew. We had a great time and would laugh together at all the oopses we bungled through. That year G decided he wanted to play it for my brother as his gift. I was hesitant because of the “sleep in heavenly peace” line. We were hoping for miracles about then. That was his last Christmas with us. So, that song stays in my heart because I remember how my brother listened so intently as he lay in his bed. My big brother,,,I think my 10 year olds son’s gift did give him a few bars of heavenly peace.

  • Nancy

    Zana – Your idea to put the names of your children on a slip of paper and place them in your stocking was an incredible idea. What a beautiful way of looking at the blessings, your children, to diminish the sense of what has been lost or taken away.
    May God bless you with an abundance of peace, love, and joy for the reaminder of this year and 2008.
    Nancy L. from NJ


    At Christmas, there is nothing so beautiful than the simple yet profound melody of the Silent Night in piano that you posted for us in BB, nothing so special than the ordinary yet warm touch of love you expressed so gently for us, nothing so precious as the free gift of reaching out heart to heart to us your BB friends. May God bless you and continue to give you strength and inspiration to do His great work to ease the pain of those who are hurt and to bring meaning to those who are bereft of understanding life’s true worth and value. – Benedict “Bobby” Sagra

  • Anonymous

    I have favorite sacred AND secular Christmas songs and am always thrilled when the radio stations begin airing them post-Thanksgiving even trhough I resent the stores who put up their Christmas displays anddecorations around the same (too early for me!–go figure!) My sacred favorites include (Of Course) O Holy Night, which a cousin and I used to quarrel over whose voicewas best suited to sing on Christmas Eves long past, ‘Ave Maria,” and “Lo, How A Rose Ere Blooming” while my secular favorites also tend to be the sadder romantic tunes such as “Blue Christmas or “I’ll Be Home For Christmas.” I have a fairly large collection of christmas CDs from which to choose, from almost EVERY type pf performer imaginable(From The Morman Tabernacle Choir to Bluegrass) and always have them playing in the background while decorating or baking. It wouldn’t be the same otherwise!) And yes, I shamelessly tend to sing along in spite of my son’s chastisement “Is that Whitney Houston singing, Mom? Why don’t we let her do it?)

  • Terri

    I have so many things to be thankful for that I can hardly even count them. Yet I have been diagnosed as “depressed.” Sometimes that’s true and sometimes not so much. Christmas Day was certainly a verified “yes” in the depressed category. I remain thankful for my three healthy children; my four healthy grandchildren; mine and my husband’s health and well-being. I pray for the safe and healthy birth of the grandchild on the way. I pray for the safety of our servicemen and servicewomen who are far away; for those who may be ill and for those who care for them. I pray for the acceptance into heaven of our dearly departed and for the comfort of those they leave behind. I pray that I — and those depressed as I have been diagnosed — may live the lives we’re meant to live, with or without this bother. I pray that our loved ones will understand.

  • Larry Parker

    The Vatican should adopt your prayer verbatim (well, the armed forces part only applies as long as the Iraq and Afghanistan wars go on, but you know what I mean) as the “Prayer for Depression.”
    I mean it. That’s simply amazing. Mr. Agnostic (sort of) is going to start saying it himself.

  • Barb

    Teri, your prayer is amazing. I hope you will allow me to adopt it as my own as it is perfect. As my husband and family are gone, the section about our dearly departed has special meaning to me. Today, Dec. 31., would have been my husband’s birthday.
    Some people don’t understand that we are grateful for our rich blessings, but we can still be depressed. While we can help ourselves with treatment, a good “kick in the butt” isn’t the answer as some folks perceive it.

  • Lydia (Adkins) Simpson


  • JoAnne Schmidt

    Christmas is very hard for me and some of my family. My youngest son’s wife left him and this is the first Christmas without her for him so understadably very sad. My 99 year young mother is dying and although I know her life has been long and rich, I will never be ready to let her go.Since my dad passed several years ago, Christmas has not been the same. Somehow, after your children reach adulthood and there is no more secret presents from santa, that part of Christmas is over. I have many memories of Christmas past when the whole family was together and happy. I try to remember those times.


    Merry Christmas Therese to you & your family! May you be abundantly blessed throughout this season & through the coming year!
    Definitely one of my most favorite Christmas songs! I just heard it played at a Women’s luncheon by an expert on the alto flute, with scenes from the movie “The Nativity” on the screen in the background! I had tears streaming down my face!
    My husb. & I have no children/grandchildren, and this is the time of year I feel that ache the most. Also, the small family I have left all lives out of state (Thank God for Facebook & the phone!). So, it’s never quite the happy time for me that it used to be in my childhood days when we were all together, and I still had so many dreams to dream yet.
    My husb. is an only child…no family but his Mom in a nursing home. OH & two very estranged adult children, who care nothing for us, from his first short marriage. For a few years in the depths of my depression after 9/11/01, I did not even decorate, but God, in His time & mercy, has healed bad memories & wounds, and I am decorating again!
    But, I too have so much to be thankful for! A God who loves me, a church family, friends that invite us to be part of their family celebrations every year…good health, a very good 38 yr. long marriage, two wonderful Golden Retrievers (our babies)…and a decent pension, a warm home, two cars, plenty of food & clothing, etc…
    Diagnosed with depression & anxiety are all still kind of a mystery for me, although it’s been 20 yrs. How can someone blessed with so much be depressed & anxious? It’s difficult to explain to people, so I fall back on the medical diagnosis to help them understand. Thank the good Lord for good doctors and good meds, huh?!
    Well, I’ve rambled enough…a very Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and a blessed New Year to you all!!

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