Twas four weeks before Christmas and all through the house

Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse (better not be a mouse in this house)

A roaring fire, albeit a gas one. My beautiful mantle adorned with a white feathery swag, alit with white lights, berries and silvery fronds tucked in just so. Three flickering candles reflecting off the wall in a golden dance. I sit back and revel quietly in my holiday design, the same every year but never quite so. I sip on my glass of cabernet thankful for another year of the wonder of the holiday season.

Holiday decorations

Don’t turn your head Liz, don’t turn your head.

I turn my head..

And what to my wondering eye should appear…

A Walker

An overhead/off the floor grabber

A shoe horn that looks like a speculum on steroids

A dressing stick and sock aide

A leg lifter

Ahh the accoutrements of post-surgical hip replacement. The ‘the hip kit’ ($39.95 on Amazon) is not to be confused with my more preferred ‘lip kit’ (prices vary at Ulta and Sephora.) But my preferences do not matter. My holiday décor does not matter. And definitely my disdain for ‘visual noise’, a trigger for me,  does not matter in this most joyous of seasons 2022.

Holiday decorations

So…instead of seeing mommy kissing Santa Claus, I see…

One pack of body wipes

Two compression socks

Three new medications

Four pages of post-op

Five back-up ice packs

My triggers nor my holiday décor matter not a whit this holiday season because we, Liz and Jack Henry, who in 1982, promised to love one another through sickness and in health, in this year of our Lord 2022 are being tested on that sickness part. Jack had full hip replacement yesterday which apparently means for the next four to six weeks, full comfort and joy replacement as well. The cheer will be hard to find and spread this year. Breathe Liz, breathe.

In preparation for the surgery I did as much pre-holiday decorating as I could. Once again I petitioned our local boutique garden center to design my wreaths. Custom wreaths that WOW (my wreaths are my signature Christmas décor.. they’re real and they’re fabulous.) I shake them up every year (the wreaths) and every year I experiment with something new, different, and once again this year they did not disappoint. I’ve placed a few more lights around Pottery Barn indoor wreaths, , strewn garland around an antique mirror and placed sequined pillows on the couch for pizazz. I’m trying to wrap my head around the decidedly un-festive clank of the necessary, numerous, cumbersome uglies. And thus, I have had to make the most difficult decision of all…


“But GG where will Santa put the presents?” my sweetest Rosie asks.

“Ro, he’ll put them right in front of the fireplace, honey. Just for this year, I promise”

And I do promise that to her and to myself as well. Because life is about adapting, modifying, figuring out what’s best and accepting that- even when it’s not our first choice. As Maeve Binchy, one of my favorite authors, wrote in her beautiful collection of Christmas short stories Next Year It Will Be Different, I vow that this is this year and yes, next year… it WILL be different.

P.S. My new Carol for this year: (sung to ‘Tis the Season to be Jolly)

Instead of Liz getting new lips

Jack decided to get a new hip

Liz Kurkjian-Henry

December 2, 2022


Holiday on Hold…. Santa Got us a New Hip for Christmas was last modified: by

Sharing is caring!