Lights gently twinkling; snow softly falling; the sound of those Christmas carols we’ve heard since childhood floating through the air. This is the season that evokes a palpable beat in our hearts stirring up memories from long ago. Nestled within these memories are what shape time-honored traditions. Whether it’s sending cards, baking cookies, finding the perfect tree; the traditions we find ourselves striving to perfect are sometimes the most elusive.
As I’ve grown (by the way, that’s a code word for ‘gotten older’), I’ve realized that the traditions I love so much are sometimes a fantasy of my reality. Each year, I have the best of intentions to honor the traditions that are tried and true and I even resolve to over-achieve and create new ones! And each year, I’m disappointed when I realize I’m not living up to my own ‘Tradition Expectations’! I’m not sure any of you can relate, but this is a symptom of what I call, Holiday Stress Syndrome (HSS). That is a diagnosis you won’t find in a medical journal and no, you won’t find a cure at CVS. Yes, HSS is all around us; many of you may suffer from it but, don’t fret, I’m working on a cure!
I’ve decided the best prescription is to just slow down and celebrate every single moment this season throws my way; no matter how big or small. I have no tree this year (long story) but I have a fabulous front door wreath and garland that was hung by a kind elf! I felt my grand baby-to-be move for the first time; now, THAT’S got Christmas magic written all over it! I’m excited to celebrate the holiday with a trip to NYC where my husband and I will surely find a Christmas tree and enjoy a nice glass of red but most importantly, I’m trying to make sure the people I love know exactly how I feel about them....
And so, my admission to all of you is that you probably won’t receive a card from me; but I’ll hug you extra-hard when I see you. You won’t receive any homemade cookies, but I’ll do my best to make you feel welcomed at my table. I may not be able to sing carols with you (although I was always enchanted by the idea of going door to door) but I promise to hum extra-loud as we watch the Goodnoe Elementary 6th-graders sing for our residents!
But most of all, my wish for you is that you also slow down; breathe in every moment this season throws at you; worship and celebrate whatever religious tradition you honor; giggle at the sight of a red-cheeked toddler staring in wonder at the Santa on the corner; inhale the scent of pine; and listen for the bell signaling an angel just got it’s wings!
Merry Christmas, dear friends.....thanks for sharing 2018 with me!