This morning in our Restorative class, we talked about allowing ourselves to be open to not just giving love, but receiving love. To believing that there was an untapped well, a never-ending supply of love just for us. This got me thinking about the upcoming holidays and family events.
It is so easy to see cartoons (memes for the younger crowd) that make fun of family holiday events and the angst they provoke. It is equally easy to sink into that angst when thinking of family events. We’ve all wasted time and energy focusing on the stress of the season. Having enough money to purchase gifts for everyone, keeping the kids contained through dinners, travel arrangements, coordinating multiple family schedules, on and on. It’s easy to focus on that part of our gatherings and close ourselves off from the true joy of being with ones family.
I used to be SO STRESSED around holiday times. Don’t get me wrong- I adore Christmas mostly because of the huge family gatherings I get to enjoy. But every year, despite my intentions otherwise, the holiday would unfold in a rushed, stressful morning as I attempted to get to my Grandparents on time with all my kids. That stress would carry into the morning and would almost always end up with fighting kids on the way home.
A few years back, one of my cousins arrived late with her kids. Do you know what I didn’t think when she walked in the door? I didn’t think about how unorganized she was. I didn’t think about how chaotic her family was. I didn’t think about anything of the sort. Instead, I just thought
I’m so glad she made it here this year.
What if we gave ourselves that kind of flexibility? What if we just celebrated that we made it to another year, that we get to spend time with family and loved ones? What if we let go of the things we assume we are supposed to focus on, the appearance we think we need to project? What if, instead, we simply open up to the love of the season? Even more importantly, what if we simply open up to the love of being with those who matter to us as we celebrate our holiday events?
Opening yourself up to receive love is a challenge for so many of us. That’s a topic for another day, but it is something I’d like to leave you with. Can you, just for a moment, imagine what it would feel like if you loved yourself the way you love your favorite family members? Can you give yourself the space to be who you are, just as you give to them?
May you all find the joy and love in your holiday season,