Navigating Christmas… looking at the calendar, counting the days and scheduling activities, another gift to purchase or maybe the last-minute touches on your decorations. I navigate. If you know me? I often have no sense of direction even when using a GPS. So, when I say I navigate….I’m really saying that I get lost a lot. I tend to “wander” when I should be in “wonder”… here’s the difference between the two.
Wonder – To be filled with admiration, amazement or awe; to marvel.
Wander – To go aimlessly, indirectly, or casually; meander.
Honestly, I relate to both at Christmastime.I navigate the highs and lows of the season.
I am a content person for the most part, cautious and careful… okay, maybe the term “boring” is more adequate.. but then again.. send in the crazy Christmas elves that make havoc in my head and we’ve got ourselves a holiday circus act.
I actually borrowed this photo from a friend. When I saw it, I immediately thought “Wonder” – the magical season of Christmas and all that it embraces. I also thought it should be a visual reminder for the days when I have more “Wander” than “Wonder” in my season. Christmas through the eyes of a child…keep it simple..reminisce.
I find it a slippery, snowy slope that sometimes lands me over the hill (a WV sledding reference) turned up on my head. Since I loved sledding so much, it’s an easy metaphor…you just get up and dust the snow off and take another run at it.
Christmas for so many of us is a balance. I love to paint the Norman Rockwell visual at Christmas.. who doesn’t. It keeps the season bright and cheery, especially for the little people. I enjoy visiting Christmas’ past with my own daughter. Childhood flees.. but memories do not. I balance my Wonder/Wander like juggling apples and oranges out of my Christmas Stocking.
I choose “Wonder” for the most part, maybe even 90% of the time. I choose it because it is far less heavy.
If you have read any other blogs here.. you would know that the other 10% is where I often “Wander” … My best friend aka…my grandmother died Christmas Eve when I was 17, Sometimes my parents argued at Christmas, the times there were less presents (kids remember) because my Stepfather’s mines went on strike..oddly, I can’t remember spending one single Christmas with my own Daddy and I still don’t know why. It shouldn’t matter but it somehow it does when I am “wandering” in my thoughts here. My own mother battled depression every single Christmas after losing her mother on Christmas Eve..And even now here I am missing her at Christmas because despite that.. she always made Christmas special for us…just as I will attempt for mine as well. That other 10% is often heavier than a sack of Santa coal for me..yet.. the truth is..there are always others that carry more than a mere 10% every single day.
The reality of the season… Not everyone has pleasant Christmas memories. Some are pretty horrid and tragic..seems minor even to some of my least favorite memories compared to others? Some folks didn’t get the opportunity to see “Wonder” …
With that being said, not all of my friends/family love Christmas. Some of them despise it, wish it would just speed on by. However, I can say that they don’t wish my holiday away… and I try to refrain from pushing too much of my “Wonder” their way. Everything is a balance and a whole lot of Grace for the giving and receiving. Sometimes it’s enough to just say… Me, too, or I’m sorry.
So when I display my beautiful tree… cookies and baking? Just know that the “Wonder” of the season is still being sought out…. and in the quiet of my “Wandering” I’m still working through some things… just as we all are. My heart still breaks for those that are smack dab in the middle of a season of pain. I often see the quote “All who wander, are not lost” …. maybe so. not indefinitely anyway.
If you have the chance to enjoy “Wonder” this season.. cherish it
If you have the chance to make someones Christmas memories better this year… by all means! make it happen!
If you are given the chance to heal instead of harm with your season of words.. choose healing.. always.
And, if by chance, some of ya’ll need a person to “Wander” around aimlessly in thought or in a store this season…..navigating Christmas.. I’m probably your person LOL.
Here is that adorable “awe” photo again…. I just couldn’t let this one go.
Wishing you “Wonder” while you “Wander” through the season.. Hold tight to the good stuff my friends..