Find Your Own Sparkle by Stephanie Phillips

Here we are on the 1st December, the official countdown to Christmas begins as advent calendars have their first day eagerly opened by kids across the world.

As a kid I’d take turns to open the door with my brother and we’d try to guess what the picture was behind each door. Now it seems that each kid has their own calendar and each door contains a chocolate. I still enjoy the idea of advent calendars but rarely have one, I’ve never liked the cheap chocolate and the other ones seem expensive for what they are; a piece of paper covered in glitter. I am sure the cost would seem insignificant if I had kids whose faces would light up if we guessed the right picture behind the door.   

Christmas is not what I dreamt it would be and whilst the sparkle is not as bright it is still there.

I have lived a few hundred miles away from home since I was seventeen but I have returned nearly every year for Christmas. I have been privileged to see my nephews and niece open their presents on most Christmas days over the years. I will never forget buying a battery controlled snowman that wiggled and jiggled as a tune played and watching in delight as my two nephews wiggled and jiggled along with it. Big smiles on their faces and laughter ringing out as they repeatedly pressed the button to play it again.

Now my niece and nephews have grown and as teenagers the wonder and amazement has diminished, but we still gather and play party games with as much gusto as we always have. I still love each opportunity to spend time with them.

In my twenties I brought bowls ready for big family parties. I wanted to ensure one bowl each for jelly, trifle and fruit cocktail but those dishes were never needed. Christmas is not what I expected but I will make the most of what I have. I feel lucky to have experienced each one of those family Christmas times, especially as I know this time is not as easy for every childless woman or man.


Stephanie Phillips

Founder, World Childless Week

Over the coming month World Childless Week will be sharing a mixture of blogs and ideas to try and support you through this time and perhaps help you find your own sparkle.

On Sunday 2nd at 5pm GMT there will be a Facebook live with Stephanie Phillips and Berenice Smith. They will be sharing the viewing figures for World Childless Week 2018 and news of what is to come this month and going into January 2019.