Christmas nerd, check. It is one of, if not, my favourite time of the year. Here’s a fun little fact, my first job , which I practically had to beg for, was as a christmas elf at the shopping mall. I was 14, rarely had a moment to spare because of my training. I shuffled along the mall corridor to my post at the pole. Yeah, that was me. I could play christmas carols for a months without tire. Ok things have changed a little now. However this magical, festive and fun time of year, can also be the most painful too for many.
There’s something about living in juxtapose that can really intensify feelings, I’m not talking about the light fluffy ones either, those too. But more importantly, I’m talking about the dark ones.
So let me paint a picture for you. You feel low, maybe something happened, maybe its biochemical, maybe you don’t have enough vitamin D, whatever…none of this even matters, but when you feel at the bottom of your game and all you see is love all around, well what could otherwise feel upsetting becomes down right heartbreaking and debilitating during the holiday season. I know a lot of people struggling right now. There’s always pain palpable during the holidays if you listen and watch closely. And while I always want to appreciate the beauty of every moment, the reality is that some people are feeling so blind to those feelings that they cannot even see it no matter how they try. They are in it, the thick, the black and probably all with very good reason.
I spent years being away for christmas, where? In hospital. Not able to leave. Literally. I do not feel sorry for myself for those years past. I’m grateful now that this chapter is over and that it is an experience I now have. But at the time, it was devastating. It also was for my family. Not only had their christmas elf’s joy been darkened, but with it, theirs too. To see so much dark next to twinkling lights. So much laughter and celebration next to… well a pile of nothing. It can be deafening. It is a contrast that highlights the best and worst of the season. We see that in peoples stress levels, their moods, their spending, drinking, eating, fucking. Everything. Excess or famine. The reality of our society on full power during the month of December.
I don’t know where I am going with this, other than to say, we need to look at our fellow persons and ourselves deep down inside take stock and care. Really fucking care. And if you are one of those struggling right now, know that the struggle isn’t lost and believe me, it won’t be forever. You are not wrong, worse, hopeless or gone, it just feels that way in comparison, and most importantly we are not our thoughts we are telling ourselves. We believe we are and so we tell ourselves that. I’m not good enough, thin enough, wealthy enough, HAPPY enough! Fuck we sometimes can’t be happy enough. How messed up is that?Want to feel something real, stand outside, feel the rain fall on your face, the taste of chocolate hitting your tongue, look at someone and fucking smile. Even if you don’t want to, do it. They may smile back, they may not, but biologically, it might just change something in you, maybe not. But if nothing else. Know its not just you, there is sadness all around, beneath those smiles and clinks of glass. I wish there wasn’t. I wish I could change that. Knowing I’m on the other side of this now, grateful but still have moments as we all do, clinging on. We all get ready to say fuck you to a year past and welcome a new one as if it has all the answers, a fresh start. It doesn’t. Only you do. Right now this very second. New years day is right now.
So pause, take inventory. Do you know anyone who may need an extra hug, a surprise christmas card, a moment of gratitude or fuck, just a phone call…just do it. Pick up the phone, spend that extra moment we are always waiting for. Or maybe it’s you. We need no reminder of the power of the present moment, it is ALL we truly have and sometimes it is all that can make the difference. That is the gift of christmas. The miracle of the moment.