We just finished the Thanksgiving holiday and now we are winding up for the Christmas festivities! Holiday traditions abound at this time!! And I join in with the holiday activities...at least what I hold dear to my heart.
I live in a world now that does not celebrate the holidays like I have experienced for so many years of my life. I think being in an environment where I am less saturated with all the traditions of the holidays, I have come face to face with the question, "Why do I do this anyway?" Being in the flow of a river where you flow with the current causes your journey to be effortless and even automatic. Living in America during this holiday season is like being in a huge river with a strong current carrying you through the season with many, "it's suppose to be", "it's just what we do", and so many other automatic and traditional thoughts.
So what is all of the hype of the season about? I would like to share some of my reflections with you as I have grappled with this since living abroad.
First let me share...
Where I have lived, these cultures also have their festivities and celebrations that are focused around their beliefs and cultural/religious traditions.These celebrations connect generations. They pass on beliefs and traditions from generation to generation. They are part of the fabric or substance of a society and an individual's life. These celebrations become a touch point for a family to gather together over the year or at least to send well wishes to each other and friends. So in light of these reflections, I have continued to celebrate the holidays that are dear to my heart, namely, Thanksgiving and Christmas. Now, the WAY this happens has changed. Some things are the same but many things change to fit where I am now. But keeping the footprint of these celebrations in my life and family are of great importance to me.
If you find yourself grappling with the question,"Why do I do this anyway?", here are some of my reasons. Maybe you will find a light of understanding for yourself as you read these. And at this time of year let me say to you...
(Click Read More for Cindy's Holiday List)
- I enjoy the season with it's colors, music, decorations, foods, and the meaning or reason for the season.
- I believe in the meaning of the holidays (Thanksgiving and Christmas) and I want to continue to give honor and value to these ideals and truths.
- Staying connected with the holidays today helps me to connect with my past. I can recall the family times and the traditions of the past.
- Staying connected with the holidays today help me connect with my future. I am building traditions and touch points today that will impact my relationship with family and friends into the future.
- I look past the commercialism of the holidays. I focus on the reason and I make it personal. I make the celebration alive and real for me.
- I use the ideals and truths of these holidays as a launching point for doing deeds of kindness & love for others.
- I use the ideals and truths of these holidays as a reflection point to remember what I am thankful for, what people mean to me (family and friends), and what I hope for in the future.
- And lastly, these holidays are fun times for me. I find ways to keep the fun in the celebration.
These days I may have to postpone my traditional holiday meal, etc. with my sons until summer time (Christmas in July) when I go home. BUT I still find ways to have fun and reach out to my family and friends at the seasonal time. I want them to know they are loved and remembered!