Three years ago my oldest daughter Lauren and I were in Kohl’s at Christmas time we came across An Elf On A Shelf, in the box complete with book and story $39.95.
We both looked at each other a laughed aren’t we lucky we don’t have to that!

Thinking she would never understand this.

Then we proceeded to make jokes about how all of the parents were losing sleep over what to do with their little Elf.

We commented on some of the cute and creative ways friends had posted on Facebook of their Elf doing funny things and we laughed.

I picked up the box and said to her should I buy it just in case. “ No, Mom don’t waste your money she will never understand it.

Ever my oldest granddaughter is 5 years old. She was diagnosed with Autism at the age of 16 months. At the time, we were in Kohl’s Ever was not even speaking and the professionals were not sure she would ever speak.

I can still remember holding the box and walking around the store with it. Wanting this to not be our reality. Lauren came back to me again. Mom, put that back. Don’t waste your money.

I placed the box back on the shelf and sadly convinced myself that it was for the best. She would never understand it. Don’t waste the money.  My heart was so broken as we walked out of the store that night.

Recently, I got a call from Ever.  YAYA, Look what I got.  It’s a Elf.  As Lauren and Ever mostly Lauren by this time started to retell the story of Ever getting her Elf.  The tears stared to flow.

Lauren asked me why I was crying.  Because we thought she would never talk.  We thought she would never understand the Elf thing.

I am Ever’s grandmother.  I will protect her until the day I die.  But if I am telling my truth there will be so many things that we will miss out on or they will be different.

Truthfully that is ok.  Because she brings us so much joy and love.

I am the best grandmother of Ever.  I will have to continue my grief work on her as we go along. Which means, I will continue to grieve all of the things that I wish were different, better or more.

We know that as grievers we do not only grieve death.  Grief can affect us in so many ways.  The loss of a typical granddaughter is a major loss.

I love Ever and we are so blessed to have her as our special gift.  ~ Sharon