Christmas has always been about more than the presents under the tree and the lights on the streets. It is about family and friends around the table, it is about celebrating our faith and the gift of love and forgiveness from God. It is about the joy we share with every Carol sung. It is about the memories made over baking sweets and granny’s Christmas pudding. It is about every tradition from the past and every new tradition you create as you grow older.
Christmas for me has also been a time for reflecting on the year that went by – the good, the bad and the ugly. It has been about counting my blessings and being thankful for every person and situation that made me, broke me and challenged me. Christmas is a time for new beginnings and believing, for loving and living, for forgiving and forgetting.
This Christmas, I find myself embarking on an unfamiliar path with a familiar feeling – a new beginning. I find myself nervous and excited. It is our first Christmas as a couple and a first with different traditions. But I’ve come to realise that while a lot of this seems very different and somewhat daunting, celebrating Christmas as I see it will always have the same meaning to it despite our different cultures and traditions. It will always be about family and the love and magic you share and create during the holidays. So, despite being in the wilderness of it all, during Christmas, all roads still lead to home. A home built from people most dear to you – our parents, our close family and friends, us.
It’s beginning to feel a lot like Christmas.
As Christmas draws near again, I find myself reminiscing about the holidays. Running down the hallways at home and laughing through every little tumble and fall. The chaos and excitement around decorating the house and mum turning every dull wall into a bright and colourful Christmas wonder. The rush on Christmas eve before mass and feeling renewed and peaceful once we returned home to Christmas cake, wine and coffee. The lovely Christmas lunches that faded into dinners, with stuffed faces and tummies. The Santa parties, gift shopping and singing Christmas carols into the night.
So this Christmas, I don’t want a fancily wrapped present to make my heart rejoice. I only need the feeling of love and hope to create new memories that will last a lifetime. I am excited to create new traditions mingled with old ones. I am excited to pick out and decorate our first tree, and bake (maybe burn) our first batch of cookies. As Christmas carols echo in our living room, I can’t wait for different corners to glitter with Christmas lights and to decorate every wall with tinsel. I am excited about our little Christmas manger and putting up the star we both picked out for our tree. I am excited to indulge in a Christmas movie marathon while writing Christmas cards and wrapping presents and turn everything that’s daunting into something delightful.
May your Christmas be full of love and magic and may your heart be full of brand new memories. I hope you see smiles wherever you look and that happiness goes wherever you go.