It’s been a difficult season. I feel guilty for lacking that magical feeling as other families deal with their own crisis. I find myself fighting the logical side feeling very fortunate while another wrestles with faith and confidence in a changing life.
I’ve always said that all the stress and running around for Christmas is pointless as it always arrives and it always works out. No matter how much we are proven this fact, we still stress.
There are many nerves that the season stirs in us. The first is our egos; we need to find and be able to afford the best gift and we need to come through for our kids, our families. It’s just one day to show we’ve been listening all year.
Another nerve is guilt. Did we hit the mark? Did we show how much we care? Did we leave anyone out?
There are so many feelings and emotions all interacting at the same moment. We realize true loneliness as other families and friends gather while we are alone. The season amplifies all that we have and all that we lack.
Finally after all the stress is over and Christmas eve comes-we realize what is most important. It’s time that we can spend with our families. It’s the smile and laughter among friends and loved ones that makes us realize why we do all we do to prepare.
The amazing thing is the beauty and magic have nothing to do with the gifts or the decorated tree and shiny wrapping paper. There is a reason why the Grinch failed, he stole only what made Christmas look like Christmas, he couldn’t steal the love and togetherness that was in the hearts of Whoville.
On Christmas eve I shared a meal with my son, close friends and family. I went to church and watched other families and felt the joy of what the season is supposed to mean.
On Christmas day – I watched my oldest son and his girlfriend with such pride. I felt so lucky to have known him since he was two and felt the privilege of having raised him. Raising him truly made me be a better person.
His son will enjoy the holidays to come with the same passion and joy we shared, like cutting down a tree in East Texas, Santa’s footprints from the fireplace on the carpet and the half eaten cookies and hot chocolate for Santa. I also watched family members gather around and realized how much love we all share after so many years of family history. I felt lucky to be a part of their celebration.
I listened to my youngest son and all his joy for the season. I watched him save several aspects of the season and truly made my holiday special. My brother and his family shared gifts as we always do and I realized how much a family thinks of and cares for each other.
This was my Christmas and no matter what is to come, I choose to count my blessings, realize how lucky I am to have the people that I can call friends and family. These gifts are given by the host of hosts. My faith, for the moment, restored, I look up to a dull gray winter sky and I am truly thankful.