While walking though Macy’s a week or so ago doing a little Christmas shopping I found myself totally in shock at how unhappy people seemed to be. Customers were grouchy, employees were impatient and brisk, and there was no spirit of joy anywhere to be found. All I could do was wonder if this is what Christmas had come to; an unhappy holiday where people just threw money around on stacks of gifts, never taking in the true meaning of this season.
I know, there used to be (may even still) a pagan holiday celebrated around this time, but well over 100 years ago, generations before us decided to create holiday that focused on the birth of our Savior. Some time later the legend of St. Nicholas was added to the holiday. A simple little “birthday” celebration has transformed and changed over the generations from sweet to chaotic which has brought us to Christmas 2014. Instead of peaceful and enjoyable family moments there is stress, constant rushing, and the pressure of consumerism which has turned people all around us into Scrooge’s and Grinches. And the day after Christmas is a sigh of relief as all the decorations come down and we get on with our lives as if nothing special had ever occurred.
It’s heartbreaking to see. No matter how hard I try, I am as guilty as anyone in this which has resulted in my children not knowing the relaxing Christmases that I treasure from my own childhood.
This was a huge wake-up call for me and I actually cried over this revelation.
I also decided that while I couldn’t make things perfect, I would salvage what was left of the Christmas season and make it a holiday to treasure for my husband and especially my children, but also make sure all of our friends and neighbors had a little personal touch from us.
It was this moment I decided there would be no monogrammed card, no picture card, or like last year no card at all….
I decided that I would handwrite notes in each and every Christmas card I sent as well as hand address them.
I wanted all our friends and family from all over; 12 states and 3 countries to know that we were thinking of them and they were worth my time.
It’s nothing big, but just a gesture of how I’m feeling this year; a little joy to make someone else’s day merry and bright.
My challege for you is to do something small for someone as well! Little acts of caring are what makes this holiday so special. Pay it forward and let’s see if we can’t change some moods!