“I can’t wait until it’s over.” Most of us have, at one time or another, uttered these dreadful words in December.
It’s the busiest week of the year for many of us. No matter how hard we try, last minute demands require our attention. We put undue pressure on ourselves to have a perfect, Hallmark holiday.
For me, Christmas exists in smaller moments. Between work, decorating, shopping, cooking and wrapping, there are truly peaceful spaces of time carved out of my chaotic schedule. It’s easy to miss them, if you’re not paying attention and present in the moment. Or, sometimes, you have to create them. I did just that this morning.
After rushing around getting ready for the day, I realized that everything was ready: The Yankee Swap gift and food offering for the office party, the shopping list for the way home, my travel mug of coffee. The trash and recycle bin were at the curb. Glancing at the clock, I realized that I was going to be right on time – for the worst rush hour traffic of the day!
Instead, I asked my friend Alexa to play some traditional Christmas carols. There was a small pile of ornaments waiting to be added to my tree. This seemed a good time. For ten minutes, I hummed along with the music and finished trimming the tree. All of my ornaments are sentimental and hold special meaning for me: The hand tooled silver icicles from the blacksmith shop in Vermont, the little antique Santas that were my mother’s, crocheted snowflakes from my Nana, and the ones that my children made for me, decades ago.
It’s so much more than just a Christmas tree. It is a lifetime of warm memories. It sparkles with the love of generations of family and friends. In that short ten minutes this morning, I felt all of it – My mother’s hands, my children’s voices, my friends’ thoughtfulness.
This season brings many blessings. May your moments be filled with peaceful reflection, comforting traditions and the warmth of family and friends. Keep them in your heart all year long.