I have a soft spot for old-time Christmas songs. Those sung by Bing, Andy and Burl. When I hear them I drift right back to my childhood. A time when I marked my tomorrows between now and the next December 25th. Always so far away…took so long to reach- a whole year in fact. Where has that gone? How did the year become so short…as it seems now but a brief sigh between today and the next December 25th.
I search my radio for a station playing this beloved music. I save it as a favorite in my car, if only for the next few weeks. And I listen as I drive… and I remember when…
When the decoration boxes came up from the basement. I dug in as I found the garland of the years gone by, the felt elf, glitter covered reindeer, red bows and plastic ivy. I would drape, hang and tack away enveloping our indoors in red and green.
When the Christmas tree was real. Bought locally and brought home to drag up the family room steps and into the house. Our tree sat in the same place for my whole childhood. Year after year, a welcome reminder to the steadiness of my life growing up. Yet at one point it became fashionable to buy an artificial tree and we do so…no longer pine needles dropping quietly to the floor.
When plastic became a scent of my Christmas – so unlike spicy cinnamon sticks and fresh-cut pine..yet to me as much a Christmas smell. My new baby dolls had this smell and to this day if I come across the plastic smell of the 60’s it takes me back ad I want to hold it close. Such a simpler, innocent time for me and one I cherish.
When family would gather at our home, filling it with laughter, jokes and light-hearted mirth. The kind that makes everything right with the world if for just a few days. Homemade cookies and candy abound in special little dishes and plates brought out of the cupboard. I loved that time. Family makes me feel rooted in the ground…a sense of continuity and steadfast in spirit. A sense of belonging and sharing.
Soon the Christmas music will disappear from the radios…the trimmings will be boxed up for another year and my memories will be safely tucked away. Blessed memories of innocent times, family and the enchantment of Christmas. I will find myself at a bit of a loss for a week or so. I don’t do so well after all the hullabaloo is done. I have always been this way for as long as I remember. While many people sigh a relief that the holidays are over…I don’t. Instead I ponder, worry and become introspective about next year. Will someone be missing from the midst of those I love, in some way will life be so different from today. We never know the answer but for some reason I always ask the question once the quiet moments surround me. I know that life can change in a minute, I know that we should always be grateful for each moment we are here and I am. But the frailty of life is never far away…it whispers to me when the music is gone and the crowd has left for home. I tell myself that next year is just around the corner and just a sigh away…and life goes on…
May You All Have a Very Beautiful Christmas
Making new memories and recalling many wonderful times from the past