Screw the presents, the egg nog, and the mistletoe. Instead give gifts of hugs and love, eat nutritious meals with friends and family and kiss someone standing in the middle of the street (traffic permitting), not under some damn plant. I’m all for traditions, celebrations and any occasion that brings families and communities together. However, I feel that Christmas is another event that has been sucked into our economy/culture’s hypnotizing scheme of marketing, money and materialism. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a huge fan of the seasonal Silk Nog, Christmas lights, and holiday parties. I just believe that the origins of the MEANING of Christmas is lost. Just like our focus on education is lost under business deals and our local food awareness is lost behind canned foods.
For me, this is the time of year that I fill the bottom of the tree with big boxes of gratitude…all shapes and sizes! This year, I have abundant gratitude for:
my family (x 100,000,000)
my friends, near and far
google/iphone for saving my life a couple times
my yoga practice
my yoga mat (for that matter)
my bike helmet (for that matter)
my climbing shoes/harness
my favorite climbing/biking partner
green apple Layers gum
clean brushed teeth
the human body’s ability to heal
my coworker’s willingness to put up with me and laugh at me
the opportunities that lie ahead
…all of you!
This holiday season, I’m saying “I love you” as much as possible, taking risks, opening up to new ideas and offering myself a new kind of self-love: the non-material, non-ego, non-selfish kind. 2011 has been a year of pain, change and instability…but also strength and undeniable support, too. Most people (including myself) say, “I can’t wait for a new year…for bigger and better things!” But why not start today, the new year is still over a week away! And I think it’s a lie to say that next year won’t include pain, change and instability along with strength and undeniable support. So, I’m encouraging you and prepping myself not to be blown away by 2012 like a magic trick that transforms our lives. I am believer that everything we’ve ever done and everyone we’ve ever met has gotten us to where we are today. So I’m taking my gratitude with me into 2012; leaving nothing behind to be forgotten, but forgiving it all and accepting that I am who I am. Christmas doesn’t have to be the only time to eat, drink and be merry!
Merry New Year and Blessings