Days of Olde
This time of year we make our list, and as the saying goes, we check it twice. We search for the perfect gifts for our loved ones in hopes that they’ll love them. We decorate our homes with bobbles and things that bring back memories of the past and tradition: those cherished moments of when we were kids and our parent(s) seemed to work miracles, as we were oblivious to the work that it took to pull off the beauty and joy of the season. For most of us, our biggest worry was if we were good enough to warrant Santa’s visit. I can still hear that special Christmas record playing and smell the balsam fir tree, as I was gazing up at the lighted tree; and, for those old enough…melting silver tinsel on large colorful light bulbs. I recall feeling the crunch of snow under my boots, snow-caked mittens, cold cheeks and fingertips, and knowing that a cup of hot chocolate would be waiting for me.
Christmas, Bah Humbug
Through the years, we become adults, and we may have families of our own. Somehow, a bit of the magic of the season diminishes as we scurry and worry about finances, chip away at our unending to do lists, and juggle work and home. We often become quick to anger or disappointment when things aren’t done when, where, and how we want them to be. Stress somehow takes the wind out of our merriment, and those stresses can become contagious to those around us. For those of us that carefully listen and see, we’ll be lucky enough to receive gentle reminders of what the season is truly about.
What are Your Gentle Reminders
As for me, my reminders of what the season is about is in a simple touch: a loving embrace, a holding of hands, a kiss on the cheek. It’s a smile from a stranger (or as it is today, smiling eyes). In essence, it’s about the love shown by and for others.
When I think back to my childhood Christmases, it isn’t what was in the packages and bows that I remember the most. No, it is the Season of Christmas that I remember: time with my friends and family, music, laughter, the scents of chocolate and peppermint, lights, and an overall feeling of goodwill and joy that fills my thoughts. I don’t recall the things that went wrong: a forgotten desert, a tilted Christmas tree, a gift I couldn’t give or didn’t receive, a dinner that burned, a plate that got broken, or lights that didn’t work.
So, What’s it All About
It’s not about me and my needs or my wants; it’s about the giving of ourselves, caring and sacrificing for those that we love, and most importantly remembering the greatest of all gifts…Love…nothing more and nothing less. And so, I wrap a package and add a bow to make it pretty on the outside, but you see, it’s what’s on the inside that really matters. In the box, I will place my heart, my time, my joy, my hopes, and most importantly, my love. I will place, in this box, myself, and I’ll offer it as a gift…after all, isn’t that what anyone really wants? Not things, not stuff, not wrappings, not bows or bells or trees. Simply put…they just want you.