Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Christmas Carries On

I think I’m denial that Christmas is over. I’m not ready to put away the tree (although I did against my will). I don’t want to stop looking at the lights, or listening to the music, or drinking eggnog by the fire, or skating, or feeling that feeling that only comes with the holidays; the feeling of family and love and excitement.

Self-admittedly I have been a bit of a “Grinch” in previous years. Rebelling against the commercialism of Christmas, annoyed by the carols and the trees and the baking – but something hit me different this year. Perhaps it’s a coming into my own traditions, blending families, and blending Christmas and Hanukkah = Christmakkah. I’m not sure what it is. But this year was vastly different.

I felt an overwhelming sense of contentment, peace and love. I was so excited to give a meaningful present rather than the cost. Stress was limited (minus the odd mishap caused by annoying relatives) family was together, the love and beauty of the season was celebrated and I was truly thankful to spend another year with those I love.

It was the most dear, and loving holiday season I’ve experienced in years. The excitement of being a kid, over the simple things brings things into perspective.

Often it seems that my family is reminded of the fragility of life, whether through sickness, deaths or health scares. This year has been no different. The uncertainty of the future stares us in the face, and while there is stress, and worry – there is also so much love.

One thing that suffering, loss, or almost loss teaches you – is to appreciate what you have. For some reason that is an often hard lesson to learn. In a society full of want, it’s so easy to lose sight of what is important and what we have.

I feel so immensely blessed with those I love. The relationships, the friendships, the family, the health, the shortness of life, the longevity, the sun, the rain, the snow, the lights and stars, the kisses, the cuddles, the long talks, the laughter, the tears and growing and breaking – it is all so dear and clear to me; that THIS is what is important.

Another day to love the people closest.

Another day to learn something new.

Another year to grow in love.

Another moment to be thankful for.

Another morning to wake up and see my family.

Another day to walk away from the things that burden and stress unnecessarily.

So I’m not ready to leave Christmas, but I am ready to embrace a New Year.

So forgive the Christmas carols still playing, the decorations and the lights that are still up. Its beautiful and it helps me remember.

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