Why I Don’t Like “Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas”

A couple of days ago my daughter were in the car driving to a store so she could shop while her children were in school and I had the local radio station on. This particular station plays Holiday songs almost non-stop from Thanksgiving until Christmas and I thought having it on and playing softly in the background would keep us in the holiday spirit as we battled traffic and crowds.

But a few minutes into our drive “Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas” came on. I reached over and turned the radio off and, without even realizing I said it out loud, muttered, “I hate that song.”

My daughter asked me, “Why do you hate it?” and I have to confess now that I didn’t give her a truthful answer when I said, “Oh I just don’t like it” because I didn’t want her to think her old man was a wuss. I don’t think I’ve ever explained it to anyone other than my wife and that was only because she caught me weeping over it 15 years ago.

I used to love the song; the music and the lyrics, but that all changed in 1999.

1999 was a bad year for me, probably the worst at least in terms of the loss of loved ones. Early on the morning of Thursday, September 14th, my mom called to tell me that my Nana, her mother, had passed away peacefully in her sleep at the age of 91. I had just seen Nana the Saturday before as she drifted in and out of consciousness in the bed that the wonderful Hospice folks had set up in my parent’s living room (ironic, for a dying person) so the call was not unexpected but still unwelcome.

Then 2 ½ months later on Thursday, December 2nd, my younger brother called me at work to let me know that our father had passed away at the age of 74 after a prolonged illness. Again, the call was not unexpected (my brother was home from New York precisely because we knew our father’s passing was imminent), but it was no more welcome than the call in September.

So, as I mentioned earlier, I used to love the song; the music and the lyrics, however that all changed in 1999. But the change took me completely by surprise.

Christmas time rolled around and somewhere, on the radio, on TV, on a CD, I don’t remember how but somewhere the song “Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas” made its way to my ears and I was fine until the lyrics

“Through the years we all will be together, if the Fates allow”

and suddenly I was choked up and my eyes were brimming with tears as the reality that we would NOT be together through the years hit me. The Fates did not allow and there would never be another Christmas when we would be together.

I still, even 15 years later, can’t seem to hear the words without choking up, sniffling and getting tears in my eyes. As I said, a wuss.

So that is my story about why I don’t like “Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas”

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2 Responses to Why I Don’t Like “Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas”

  1. lavendrite says:

    You know, I honestly wondered if it might be something like that. I knew Granddad passed when there would have been holiday music playing. I’ve got songs like that too. *big hugs*

  2. J.M. Wetherington Sr. says:

    Hugs back 🙂

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