It went unnoticed in my house for the first two days of December. But on December 3rd the boy scouts delivered the wreath for our front door. With the fresh tang of pine, in rushed a feeling of excitement and anticipation. I can’t describe the tangle of emotions more clearly, though as I sat tying on the red bow with green floral wire, I gave into memories of tree trimming, cookie baking, and unpacking window candles and decorations for the house.
It might as well be termed Zen, because there’s a current to the holiday season. Its electricity has little to do with presents or religion, and everything to do with a time to delight in excess, joy, and goodwill for family, friends, and total strangers.
And beyond all the activity is ritual. Each year another memory added to bolster the feeling of excitement.
For my family, it’s a time of changing rituals. When my son was younger, he would select the tree with my husband. It was something they did together, a male bonding. They’d bring it home and pretend to help me trim the tree while we discussed the history of special ornaments. With him grown and working a fair distance away, we’ll select the tree and trim without him.
It sounds sad and isn’t meant to be, he’ll be home for the holidays. We’ll share the season and memories, but change requires our rituals change too. Someday he’ll bring his own family and add their special traditions. Yet for now, we’re on the edge of change, a time to watch, listen, and remember so this holiday can be shared someday.
This is a gift, one I wish for each of you this season. Watch, listen, remember…and share.