We have had to give up a lot of normalcy this year, but now we are entering the season where I really feel the loss. It’s no secret that emotions run higher at Christmas, so when things are going great, they’re really going great, and when problems arise at Christmas the sinking feeling is that much more powerful as well. My family has already had a very different dynamic this year. My wife’s uncle, who always comes for Thanksgiving, decided to stay in Pennsylvania this year; we toured a light display in the van this year instead of doing it on foot, so we missed out on a leisurely stroll and hot chocolate at the halfway mark; and one of my all time favorite Christmas celebrations, the Living Christmas Tree, was cancelled for this year.
It would be easy to focus on the disappointment, but it dawned on me this morning as I was moping around the house that these minor losses are a great reminder of all the great times I had in the past and what I have to be thankful for… and it’s still a lot. I have a happy, healthy family and we have all we need; we still have Christmas music and fun and lights and celebration to look forward to, and we still have the miracle of the manger to remind us we have not been forgotten. We feel for our friends and neighbors and loved ones who have been affected and hurt by Corona, but we also have the hope of a better year in 2021. I know it’s not possible to wipe away sorrow and anxiety and disappointment with a five minute emotional pep talk, but making it a habit to focus on the best of things and appreciate the joys of our past, can at least keep the negative from taking over. Thank you for reading my 39th blog.