So, we’re heading into the second anniversary of the discovery of COVID-19. None of us expected to be here now, still struggling with health, controversy, restrictions, and even worry and fear. And yet, here we are.
But do you know what’s so wonderful about this holiday season in 2021? There are anniversaries that are much, much older than two years!
Look at some of the wonderful celebrations and anniversaries (some numbers are estimates):
Bodhi Day (December 8): Buddhist celebration of enlightenment, 2,500th anniversary
Hanukkah (December 24–January 1): Jewish Festival of Lights, 2,186th anniversary
Christmas (December 25): Christian celebration of the birth of Jesus, 2,021th anniversary
Kwanzaa (December 26–January 1): Celebration of African American heritage, 55th anniversary
Those are just a few ‘anniversaries’ that the good people in our lands will be celebrating in December. But let’s make this very personal. What are some of the anniversaries you can focus on this year? Perhaps your child’s first visit to Santa, your first Christmas as a couple, the first time you touched snow, your first sip of mulled wine or eggnog… I know the list can go on and on.
My point is that there are so many anniversaries, rituals, and memories from this time of the year that we can rest on.
Lean back with all your weight on the positive rituals of the season.
Christmas has been supporting us for a very long time. Some of us remember wartime Christmases where even the smallest gift or surprise was a perfect moment to savor for a lifetime. Others remember bountiful Christmases where we could shower our loved ones with tangible reflections of our love.
I know how easy it can be to fall into negativity during this time. And I know that for some of you, this Christmas seems like an insurmountable obstacle. So don’t focus on getting past it. Find your holiday moment from the past and rest your memory on it. Give your heart and soul some time to hold onto that good memory.
Watch a classic Christmas movie and stay in the moment of all the magic you felt when you watched it for the first time. Savor that Christmas drink that connects you with good memories of Christmas past. Shop for a giving tree or a family in need and be entirely present in your giving. If you can, call the people you’ve shared holiday moments with, and relive them together.
The supportive weight of all those beautiful holiday rituals can help you in the present, too. Look for those children at the mall that just can’t contain their excitement for the holidays. See the eyes crinkle above a grandma’s face mask as she chooses the perfect Christmas dress for her granddaughter. Watch an old dog frolic in the snow like a puppy. Find the moments and lean into them.
There are blessings all around us right now. If you can’t see them, that’s ok. Create your own blessed moment in any way that speaks to your heart.
Let’s all remember the astounding depth of time that our humanity has been celebrating during this holiday season.
My very best to you all.