The Holidays are Upon Us
Early Saturday morning on Thanksgiving weekend, I am reflecting on the holidays that are now “all on” it is that time of year when in a flash, everything changes from a normal routine to “the holidays are here” Every year is a little different for each of us I mean sure we all have our family traditions like when you put up your Christmas tree and making Grandmas pecan pie recipe, but I am talking about the life events that change each year. The events that change how you celebrate, when, where, and most of all, with whom you celebrate.
A Reflective Christmas Season
2022 changed who I will celebrate with forever. My mom passed away in August, and I am still grieving. I'm OK, but at the same time, I am definitely not OK, and the holidays seem to shine a bright flashing light on the “I’m not OK” part. The thought of shopping for gifts and celebrating without her feels strange and sad. I sat down and started writing my Christmas list as I do every year. I am a list kind of girl. This list is a “gift list” I start with the name of the person and then decide on a gift for that person. I have been doing this for years, but in the last couple of years, I have felt less interested in the gift list and more interested in the “time list” I want to know and plan how and with whom I am going to spend the holidays.
As far as gifts go, I have everything I need, and if I want something, I buy it; I may fall into that category of what do you buy someone that has everything?” Imagine if we could buy time that we could spend with someone or give someone time for themselves. Wouldn’t that be an amazing gift? Since we can’t put time on our gold card, maybe we can still give time as a gift.
A New Type of Christmas List
I cannot finish the Christmas list for 2022. I literally cannot force myself to do it. I can’t make up a list of “things” to give people. Why? Because Christmas 2022 is different, I am different, everything is different, and pretending that it is the same is making everything worse. So, I am proposing a new tradition for this season, and I am going to share the idea with my family and loved ones and see if this tradition feels right for this season.
My New Ideas for Christmas
Here are the new things that can take the place of traditional gift giving:
Plan a family get-together. We will cook together, watch old movies, and play games. Anyone can stay for as many nights as they would like.
- Exchange a homemade card or letter for the people that you love, and list the things that you appreciate and love about this person.
- Agree that traditional gifts are not allowed this year and that we are trying something different.
- Share memories of good times that you shared through life, reminisce, laugh, and maybe even cry a little. ( happy tears)
- Plan a Sunday brunch with friends the Sunday before Christmas, Simple food, mimosas, and relaxation. Casual wear is required, and pajamas are encouraged.
My Hope for a New Christmas Spirit
My hope is that by removing the pressure of shopping for “things,” we can replace it with “time” and not just any time, “ quality time” I know that this idea may not vibe with everyone in my tribe, and some may feel the need to carry on with the tradition of shopping and giving “things,” but I am going to suggest it and see if it can fly or maybe even soar, soar high above the shopping malls and the online shopping carts.
This year is going to be hard no matter how I spin it, and I know that. I know that family and friends are the ultimate gifts and when someone you love is missing from your Christmas list, things are not and never will be the same, so maybe it is time to try a new tradition for this year. Not every year but maybe this year.
If you have also experienced a loss of a loved one this year or are feeling like you want to do something different this year for the holidays, trust yourself and do it. You don’t have to do what you have always done just because it is familiar. Above all, remember the importance of your loved ones that are here with you this season; hug them a little bit tighter and spend quality time.
Wishing you a happy and peaceful holiday season.
Paula Marie is a published author, successful realtor, and entrepreneur. Paula's mission is to empower others to manage their time and mindsets to live an extraordinary life! With Paula's eight powerful tools and life planning strategies, you can create the life you truly desire.