We have just finished up with Thanksgiving & Black Friday and we got our tree up on Sunday. As I placed my grandma’s crochet angel on top of our Christmas tree, it got me thinking about traditions. Before we had kids, I would look at what other families did for traditions and wonder what ours would be. One aunt and uncle slept by the tree with their kids on Christmas Eve. One family member had oyster stew as a tradition. One grandma made a “Christmas dessert” as a special treat.
Traditions don’t have to be just for the holidays… some people have pizza on a certain night or special birthday treats. It’s tradition for my nephew to have pumpkin pie instead of cake for his birthday (because it’s his favorite & his birthday is close to Thanksgiving). I remember getting to pick the meal for my birthday when I was growing up. It was a big deal.
Traditions tie us together. It’s like an invisible string that connects us to the event/memory/people. When I think of the Christmas angel, I think of my grandma. I picture her sitting in her chair, making the angels. I see her starching them to make them stand up. I picture her smile and hear her laugh. When I see Gingersnap cookies, I think of my other grandma who made them every Christmas. I don’t know if she made them other times if the year, but they were always there on Christmas. I picture her grey hair and glasses. It brings me back to her house with her Siamese cat, Sam. He would hide at Christmas because of all of the commotion. I was one of the few who could pet him.
Traditions bring us back to vivid memories. They make us feel safe and comfortable and reassured. What traditions will my kids remember? I’m not sure. I’d imagine they each have a different one. I tried to force some traditions when they were little, but that didn’t work. They will each have their own view of what they think is special.
Whatever your traditions are or if you create new ones, they are great just as they are. They don’t have to make sense to anyone else. They don’t need to be approved. They don’t need to conform. If it’s special to you, it’s enough.
This busy holiday season, remember that you are enough just as you are. As I am thinking of my 46 acts of kindness, I’ve found myself getting caught up on the act being big enough or good enough. “No act of kindness is too small.” I saw that quote yesterday & it really stuck. No tradition is too small if it means something to you.
Peace be with you on your journey of enough. May you be able to enjoy the holiday season with new or old traditions. May your heart be filled with peace and love… so much so that you just have to share it with others.