It is Christmas day. I am not a huge Christmas person as my immediate familys' religion (Jehovah’s Witness) does not celebrate holidays. I do not press my beliefs on them and they are respectful of mine. That is my take. It is difficult for me, but I accept it. So I either embrace my wife’s family or I spend the day alone. Alone time is good. But I will have time to be alone at other times. However I do like to celebrate. As I am typing this blog I sip my single malt Glenfiddich, (Sip, CHEERS!!) And say to you all: The holidays are for friends and family. So MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!!
There have been no phone calls of an emergency nature. It would suck to get the “someone died” or “terrible accident” phone call. So for that I am thankful. A death or an accident is hard enough without attaching it to a major holiday.
The first time I ever dropped the f-bomb around my parents was near the holidays. The neighborhood Christmas party was in full swing. The parents were imbibing in festivity fruit punches and beers. The kids went out to sneak a few squares. I was out walking with my neighbor and the rest of the gang when her dog got hit and killed by a car.
When I related the story to my father, I said “some motherf’er just hit Kim’s dog.” He came unglued. He grabbed me by the lapels, and said “don’t EVER use that word around your mother!” I thought he was going to hit me. That probably would have hurt a bit. But not as much as the poor little pooch. That dog got crushed. It really sucked. I have not thought about that incident for years. It was not my dog. It is not my holiday that is forever marked with a death. That would suck.
I do not like the commerciality. I do not like the expectancy of giving gifts and the question, “Are you done Christmas shopping?” As I get older I realize the Joy of Christmas is in the little things. The time I spend with family is more important. The time I spend with close friends is more important. The phone call or text wishing me Merry Christmas is a great gift. Even a Face Book Merry Christmas is a great gift.
Sharing time with the people I love is more important than all the toys, games, and trinkets. As my family and friends age, I realize that they will not be here forever nor will I. Facing our mortality is not a task that we learn in short order. It takes time. It takes experience. It takes death. This blog is not about death however it is about life. And the celebration of life. Sip, CHEERS!!
Beneath my scruffy exterior, the gruff demeanor, and the curse like a sailor bravado, is a heart at least twenty times the size of the Grinch. I went to spend the day with my wife’s family, My Mom-in-law is always happy to see me. Although I do not show it much I do have a bit of a soft side. Aunt Ferne actually seems to light up when I walk into the room. To me that is a great gift. We all have the gift of life to celebrate. Not just on around the holidays, but everyday.
Gift the little things. Spend some time with the relatives. Yeah, it can be a bit stress having to be here or there, traveling to hell’s half-acre and back. You can freak about the shopping and what so and so needs, etc. The petty grievances and disagreements should be left at the door. Some day you will no longer be able to celebrate life with the ones closest to you, so grab this time now, because too quickly the candle flickers out. It has taken me so many years to come to this, that I feel that I should share it now. Sip, CHEERS!!
My kids are older. The joy of the “best Christmas present ever” is long gone. Except for a brief moment today or maybe longer when I wallowed in the self pity of not spending time with my family, and then became a bit of an ass, I pretty much was on my best behavior. I did not set the tone for the day very well. I course corrected my behavior. I had time for introspection and decided that I needed to embrace the things that are good during this holiday.
Being a member of a blended family, during the holidays our time at with the kids is always a bit of a rollercoaster, and we usually celebrate with them after the 25th. We have very few set traditions. I may have done a disservice to my kids not embracing the holiday, but that is who I am. I could have tried harder, to establish or force a few traditions, but why? I have decided to cherish the living, while they are around, during this time of the year. And you know what? Sip, CHEERS!! Merry Christmas!! The day has gone well.
Just another day in paradise
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