Someone asked me today if I celebrate Xmas. It got me thinking…do I celebrate Xmas? I didn’t really before but now that I have a baby I’m not sure how to feel about it. Thanksgiving came and went and didn’t feel like more than a breeze. Not such an emotionally charged day for me. But now the mutha of all holidays is getting closer and closer.
As an adult and before baby I celebrated MLK day, the end of a long week, seeing a friend I haven’t seen in a while, Halloween, Purim occasionally. And now in addition to those I also celebrate new teeth, crawling, new sounds my baby makes, another month of my baby’s life. I don’t celebrate much else. Yet.
Celebrating for me isn’t a big to-do, it can be just taking a breath. Taking a moment to think and pat myself or someone else on the back. Smiling at my once again renewed faith in human potential. And letting go of worry for a moment (and usually not much longer). All that is good enough for me, but I have had this visions of holidays (the winter ones in particular) being full of…
Muddy, playful football games at a park around the corner.
Laughing around the fireplace until everyone is rubbing their tired eyes only to get up in the morning and laugh around the kitchen table.
Someone motherly or fatherly or auntly etc constantly refilling your hot cocoa/wineglass/tea and kissing you on top of the head.
Presents and torn wrapping paper strewn everywhere with the rest of the family traditions.
Potluck dinners or dinners cooked with a boisterous too many people in the kitchen.
Staying up late with a big family piled on top of each other on sofas in a living room remembering the past and planning the future. Knowing we would always be there for each other until death do us part.
Does anyone actually have all this anyway?
It’s not that I have a problem with having a self-made life. I guess where I get stuck is making myself (and now me and baby) over and over again. With a big family it seems you would be wrapped in love but also held to be an unchanging person. My friend Jeff says there is freedom in not having all that, “a freedom in the loneliness” he says. That freedom is bittersweet and it’s all I can taste most nights after the endlessness of another baby day.
I’m looking forward to making our own traditions, knowing that there may be growing pains on the way.
fake fireplace photo via