For most of our children's growing up years, our little family was, us four and no more, here in Florida. I didn't have much, if any family support. We weren't part of the group. In that respect, I understand what they are going through.
That said, I cannot go through life feeling guilty when I am happy, or a family event occurs without them. I can and do feel sad, for them and us. I pray for their safety and happiness. I also pray for a time when they are here with us again.
Until that time, it is a challenge to find a way to be happy for one another and not feel left out, or, guilty about enjoying a day without their presence. All I can do is my best to include all my children and grandchildren in all family life events.
Failing that, and I do at times, forgiving the failure and moving on. To all my children and grandchildren. I love you all as individuals. I will and have done all I can for you. None is more precious than another.
When we are apart, whether it's 3000 or 30 miles, I miss you. It is also my prayer that you all know I love you always, hope you see that, even when you may feel otherwise.
Letting go of false guilt, for me, has been a trek with a lot of bumps and stomach aches along the way. Today I can separate real guilt from false. Today is a guilt free day, knowing I've done my best, I'm letting God do the rest.
Guilt undeserved is a useless emotion, much like jealousy and envy. It can cause real and imaginary pain, both physical and emotional. Fantasizing freedom from guilt undeserved is beginning to pay off.