Tuesday, December 13, 2011


One day I hope to understand my dilemma about Christmas. Not the original Christmas. The one we celebrate today in modern times.

Many people share my feelings about the Christmas of today. It starts now before October 31 and rolls right over us like Santa's sleigh through November and on into December.

My aversion of Christmas isn't just about the commercialism. While I love the lights and the beauty of the holiday, there is just something about the holiday that puts me in a grinchy mood.

Let's start with the tree. I do NOT like the bushy Douglas Fir trees that other members of my family prefer. I like a spindly Noble Fir. Each year no one remembers what my favorite tree is. I am not blaming any one person, because truth be told if it was that important to me I guess I should go get it myself.

But my reluctance to fall hard into Christmas comes from somewhere deeper: a darker place. Childhood disappointments? Regrets?

Favorite favorite memories from my entire life revolve around Christmas. My oldest daughter, Brenna, was born on December 11th. (I'd say the year but she's already pretty broken up about turning 27 this year.) I'll never forget the moment about 3 days after her birth, walking into the living room. Brenna was in the little crib next to the decorated, live, Noble Fir tree that we bought to later bury her placenta under.

The setting sun darkened the room but the glow of the Christmas tree radiated on my darling daughter. This was Christmas. A perfect gift given to me.

When in Papua New Guinea our Christmas' were perfect. We got to spend the entire morning in our own home. No running around to get ready to go to Grammy's house. A lovely, peaceful Christmas dinner later in the day with friends who shared our time in a far away place.

Memories...that is what the ads on TV tell us we should be creating. I regret the lack of memories I made with my family. Things I wished I'd done but didn't. And now it's too late. Christmas regrets.

I believe it is important to look at life from different perspectives. And that is how I choose to look at Christmas. I am blessed. Christmas isn't about things, it is about the gift of Jesus. The gift of life.

As a kindergarten teacher my class put on a play called "365 Days of Christmas." It is in that perspective of Christmas where I want to live.

And as you can see in the picture above I got the perfect tree this year.

1 comment:

Joyce Burkeen said...

Jesus is the reason....

I agree with the Noble Fir! We used to go up high in the mountains for ours, then we began pardoning trees when we discovered they caused my "Christmas Bug" every year!

May God bless you both at Christmas and through the coming year-