Every Christmas for as long as I can remember, Christmas has always been hectic and frankly, stressful. Anyone knows me knows that I definitely have a little touch of OCD, so much of Christmas is always about things being perfect. The perfect tree, wrapping, gifts, flowers, home baking; the list goes on and on.
I’ve spent time over the years up at midnight the night before setting the Christmas table. Making sure the gift wrap was just the right shade to match ornaments on the tree. Were ten different types of cookies made from scratch enough?
One year, knowing that there were more people coming for dinner than my dining room table could seat, I went out 3 days before and bought an antique table with 3 leaves and had it delivered December 24th rather than use a card table.
I’ve rushed out to overcrowded shopping malls trying to find a certain discontinued perfume that my mother used to like, and I’ve spent way too much time stressing about whether that 20-pound turkey was enough to serve, only to find myself with SO much turkey left after to use up.
Or when three different holiday parties happened to all be on the same Saturday night the week before Christmas so rather than just enjoy one, I party hop and find I should have never left the first one!
What I’ve realized this year is that SO much of what I thought I had to do makes no sense now. This Christmas is a very different reality for all of us. Instead of a huge dinner, it will be a very quiet day with just my mother and us. Instead of running around like a mad man, I haven’t been near a store, not that any are open!
Putting the Christmas tree up this year was a different experience as it was such a bright joyful thing to do and look at Instead of wondering if I could get it done in time?
This year of 2020 has made us look at the small joys in life differently. We who celebrate this year are celebrating the fact that we are here and healthy. As the Grinch realizes, “Christmas doesn’t come from a store.”
As we all wind down on 2020, I truly hope that everyone stays safe and healthy, and that we all celebrate the important things. Maybe the gift this year is the realization that the smallest and simplest of Christmas celebrations can be the best.