T'is the Season for Mixed Emotions. After experiencing a loss in my life, I realize the importance of the little things in and around me.
“Harmony makes small things grow, lack of it makes great things decay.”
It is the time of year that brings joy to the hearts of many. But many may feel the loss of joy. There are many emotions that come up during the holiday seasons. For some, it is fond memories of days gone past. For others, it may be memories that require counseling.
For me, this year, it is a bag of mixed emotions. The recent loss of someone close to me, has opened me to some amazing insight into myself and how I view things around me. In previous years, for most of my life, I hated the holiday season. Christmas did not bring joy and happiness to me, as it did to others. As a child, growing up with an alcoholic father, the holidays where a time for him to “celebrate” and as many know, these celebrations sometimes turned into fear, resentment and heartache for the others around.
When I became a mother, I wanted my children to have fond memories of the holidays, so I did whatever I could to make that happen, the house was decorated, the cookies were baked, the table was dressed. My mother-in-law loved family and the holidays so we all have the country Christmas family thing to recall. But as usual, I could find the dysfunction in that situation too. Because it was what I knew. I would put on the holiday spirit face, play the part and pretend everything was grand, so that the children wouldn’t have to endure a life of uncomfortable memories as I had.
Was that the right thing to do?
We all have an opinion on the answer, based on our own experiences. Realizing that everyone reflects or responds in their own way, is one of the gifts I have received these past few weeks.
This year, I find myself being especially excited about the holidays! And I really don’t know why. I am being uplifted by the holiday movies playing on television. I get a little twinkle in my heart when I see the decorations in the shopping malls. I smile when I see the Santa displays. This is not the norm for me!
Santa at the Mall
So, I step back and observe. I observe me. My emotions. My thoughts. I have been doing this more and more these days in my life. Observing what is around me, like viewing myself from a third person. Its is kinda fun, try it!
Due to the recent losses I have experienced, I have begun to appreciate life more, and what life and living is about. It hit me really hard, how much stress I have in my life and how I reacted when one more thing was added. It caused me to take a closer look at me and what I expect from myself and others.
I began asking myself some questions...
- What was really important? Did things really have to be done my way, or was it okay to be done a different way? At the end of the day, as long as the task was completed, How important was it?
- Did things really have to be done my way, or was it okay to be done a different way? At the end of the day, as long as the task was completed, How important was it?
- At the end of the day, as long as the task was completed, How important was it?Was it imperative that the article was written at a certain time?
- Was it imperative that the article was written at a certain time?Would stressing and fretting over how a certain expense would be cover solve or gain anything? Was I relaxing or being lazy or on the verge of depression?
- Would stressing and fretting over how a certain expense would be cover solve or gain anything? Was I relaxing or being lazy or on the verge of depression?
- Was I relaxing or being lazy or on the verge of depression?
These were questions I asked myself. And the article was written and completed, the expense was covered and perhaps I was on the verge of depression. I had to look back on patterns in my life and realized that things always got done and taken care of. As long as I continued to put one foot in front of the other and moved forward. I really have no control over anything. Control is an illusion. Stressing and becoming fearful due to a situation did not do me or anyone else any good. Actually, it did more harm. I needed to relax, meditate, take time for me. Go for walks in nature. Window shop. Get a massage. Pamper myself in little ways. Being gentle with myself allowed me to be grateful for those around me. It diminished the stress, worry, sadness.
An Invitation to YOU
So I invite you to look at your life. Are those things you think are so important, really important? Are the deadlines you set upon yourself realistic to you and those around you?
Embrace every moment with love. Like the old saying goes, stop and smell the roses! You may not have the chance again to smell that particular rose with that particular scent, so take the opportunity and see the important things in life.
Take my word, the little things are bigger than the big ones.
“It's so easy to get whisked away in the hubbub of friends, work and busy-ness, but we need to take the time to be still and become aware of ourselves. The small things. The fact that we're still breathing. Our ability to move. The presence of love around and in us. Our strengths. Our opportunities. Our journeys.” Grace Gealey
Thank you for reading my story, if any part of it resonates with you and you would like to connect, I would love to chat. Annette Parker
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