OK, it’s over. The decorations have changed from objects of joy and anticipation to dangling dust collectors that will consume a good few hours to take down, pack away and store for another year. The good presents have lost their initial surprise, but still hold their excitement. The ones that don’t fit, are the wrong color or whatever, now remain an unwelcome chore to make good. Meanwhile, some family and friends have new memories to cherish while others went home offended, building new hostilities that will take months to heal, if ever. So, that’s it–that’s another Christmas, come and gone for another year.
I was telling a friend this morning how much more I’ve come to enjoy Halloween as my favorite holiday. I can decorate as much or as little as I want. If
I choose to participate, all it means is shelling out a few bucks for candy and then handing it out to excited little kids transformed into being someone or something that fuels their young imagination. By nine or ten o’clock it’s all over and I get to keep, and eat, whatever’s left in the bowl. There is no aftermath, no hurt feelings, no stains on the rug or broken dishes. Now that’s a holiday!
We have one more mood challenge to get through before we can call it a wrap for 2021–and that’s New Year’s Eve. Most of us hope for a better year to come and are happy to see the old one go. Once we trudge through this last day of the year, it’ll prove an easy trek getting through President’s and Valentine’s Day. New Year’s Eve still fosters more mixed emotions. It’s a quick decision for most, usually based on age, to go out or stay home. If you go out it’s a good excuse to eat, dance and perhaps drink more than you should. If you stay home it’s a lot easier: watch the game and then decide if it really matters to see the ball drop yet one more time. Some of us will wax poetic about the year we’ve had; others will wax on/wax off.
So, that’s where most of us are, this day after Christmas. It a momentary something, a void of sorts, that we go through as we ponder the meaning or meaninglessness of this annual expedition we’ve once more completed. But not to worry, we have at least a few months—or so it will seem—before it’s time to buckle up and start it all over again.