Christmas is my favorite holiday, which is a little weird since I don’t like cold weather. But Christmas makes the cold bearable, and the snow worth it. Everyone has different feelings about Christmas, but for me it’s something I feel with my entire body. It doesn’t just warm up my heart, it warms up my soul, and my mind. That’s my daughter up there in the red T-Shirt, and those are about half of my nieces and nephews. They were at moms work Christmas Party last weekend, and they had a blast.
Christmas starts around Thanksgiving for us. It’s when we bring out the tree, and begin the decorating. Christmas is celebrated for at least 6 weeks or more in our house. We don’t celebrate birthdays or other holidays for weeks at a time, but when it comes to Jesus, it’s time to celebrate. Happy birthday baby Jesus! We are thankful for your miraculous birth, and we love taking time every year to celebrate you.
When I decided to sit down and write to you this morning, I went around and took some pictures of my house. There are memories, inside of these decorations. Some I’ve had for years, and years, and then others are new to our family. That snowman is pretty new to us! I painted him 3 years ago at our work Christmas party. When I get him out each year, it takes me back to the fun that I had while painting him. This is what I mean when I tell you Christmas is a feeling. It’s more than presents, because it’s all about my presence.
I think I’m so in love with Christmas because of all the good feelings associated with it. My mom was a single mom for most of her life, but she always made sure that we still had an amazing Christmas. The whole world seems to stop, and stand still for a day. We all take the time to pause. We take the time to celebrate love and joy. My mom never let us down. I don’t know how she did it some years, but she did it and she did it well.
We’ve had this tree for years, she’s probably only going to make it for one more. I have ornaments on my tree that are priceless in so many ways. My son is 24 now, but I still have his picture from 2nd grade hanging on my tree. Every year when I get out the ornaments, the same thing happens. I unwrap each one, one at a time, and I smile on the inside and the outside. I think about how lucky I am, and how amazing my life has been. I take the time to appreciate those that I love, and I bask in the Christmas glow. 3 years ago my mom gave us a thankful jar for Christmas. She said she wanted us to write down the things we were thankful for throughout the year, and then read them on New Year’s Eve. If I’m being completely honest, that was the beginning of my journey in gratitude. For the next 2 years I filled that jar faithfully. I found small every day miracles to be thankful for, and it began to change my world. You might be wondering why it’s empty this year. I can easily answer that for you. After 2 years of being grateful, I no longer needed to write things down. I became aware of presence, and I practice it daily. This new Christmas tradition, did more then help me remember a few good things. It actually helped me rewire my brain to look for the good. I don’t need to write things down anymore, because it comes natural to find the good in things these days.
There are reminders are all over my house that Christmas is here. They start out back on the door and they carry through the entire house. I love to wake up and to see them, I love to plug in the tree in the morning. I love that I’m typing to you and everyone is asleep, but I’m sitting by the tree drinking my coffee, and preparing for the day. Instead of trying to rush to see all our families on Christmas Day, we sometimes split it up. Tonight we will be having dinner at my dads, with our extended family. There are no presents here just presence. We call it our Christgiving, it’s the time between the 2 holidays that we put into one. I might not see some of these people again for an entire year, but today we will celebrate. We will celebrate our love for each other, and our family as a whole.
I realize that Christmas is really hard when you’ve lost someone you love. That takes me back to the beginning of my story, when I said Christmas was a feeling. The Holy Spirit is alive and thriving during Christmas. I am lucky enough to carry some of those same emotions around with me all year because I’m an empath. I remember the last Christmas I got to spend with my grandpa. Something in my heart said I needed to stay on that couch and listen to him talk a little bit longer. I sat there and watched him with an admiration I hadn’t felt before. I looked at him in a different light, and I took the time to really be there in the moment with him. As most stories go, I was right to listen to my intuition because he passed away in February, on groundhogs day. (Always listen to your intuition, try not to ignore it)
When I go to my dads tonight, my grandparents won’t be around. But you know what, they are still there. I can feel them when I am on their farm. I am enveloped with feelings of love and kindness. I know they are there with us, and I know that they are proud of every single one of us. One year I had to spend Christmas without my son, and it was awful. I thought I might cry through the whole thing, and I did most of the time. So I pray for those of you who might struggle this year, and I pray for your peace. I was lucky enough to get my son back, and some of you ar not. Please know you are in my heart and my soul and I hope that my story brings fill you with love.
I love Christmas because everyone and everything stops for a moment. It’s as though we are all frozen in time. We take the time celebrate the birth of baby Jesus, and we take the time to appreciate our lives, and to be thankful for all that we have. I hope that your Christmas is as amazing as ours will be. I hope that you can feel it in your heart and in your souls. I hope that you take the time to learn gratitude and of course I hope you spoil the shit out of your kids (I know I am).
That’s my fireplace in the dark this morning. It’s a beautiful thing to see lights glowing every where. I’m so glad I decided to write a blog and share my life with you. Your all a blessing to me in one way or another. Go be blessed and enjoy your family, they are your gift from God and hey are priceless.
Teaching you about presence one day at a time!
Tavia Hayduk firstname.lastname@example.org