The last few Christmases have been very different. I suddenly became a matriarch – with all of its honors, trials, and tribulations. This year, I have been reminded of all of the blessings over the years, old and new, people who have come and gone, and the massive changes from the way I grew up.
When we were young, we had no responsibilities and fit into the traditions of our family. We learned at some point in our lives that some of us were so much more fortunate than others to grow up in a loving family. Maybe we didn’t have a lot monetarily or everything we wanted – but we had love and everything we needed.
My dad, a very educated man who taught English and Science, was also very sensitive and religious. We read a Bible lesson every night as a family and he instilled the real reason for Christmas. Christmas is to honor the birth of Christ. Period. I also learned from my parents to honor this spark of Christ in every living being. The gifts I remember from my dad were things like gloves put in the Christmas tree…things memorable and useful.
My mother, and her mother before her, made sure that everyone felt loved and was recognized and cared for. This was my responsibility for years – decorating, dinners, family gatherings. Now, this torch is being passed to my daughter as we go to her house for holidays. My role suddenly became the matriarch that holds the family together.
There are blessings and trepidations with each new role we take in life. Sometimes we have choice; sometimes life just evolves and chooses us. Whatever the phase, we can focus on the blessings or the trepidations, what we have or what we have lost. Regardless, we still have those precious memories of people and Christmases past and new memories in the making.
I have been blessed beyond my wildest dreams by good friends and family, and I wish the same for you. May God hold you in the palm of His hand this year. Wherever you are and whatever your situation, I wish you love, blessings and peace in your heart. A very Merry Christmas.