Archive for Wednesday, December 24, 2003

We wish you a timeless holiday

December 24, 2003

The Christmas of popular culture is invariably wrapped in nostalgia. For a month we listen to songs mostly older than any played on classic rock stations, watch television cartoons made decades ago, shop with the prompting of images borrowing heavily from the early 20th century and the even earlier prints of Currier and Ives.
The historical perspective is inevitable. Like birthdays and anniversaries, Christmas and other holidays are special-enough events that we remember where we were during past holidays. We can't help but think back to past holiday gatherings spent with loved ones now distant or gone. There is a warmth to those memories that melt some of the sadness of loss.
There will be many gadgets and gizmos under trees this year that we purchase knowing they will be outdated soon after the children outgrow their new sweaters. It reflects an age when everything from careers to homes to -- sadly -- relationships are transitional.
The holiday season gives us a break from that by reconnecting us to what is meaningful. The annual celebrations are filled with so many precious things -- the giggling of children, the taste of generations of love in food prepared from family recipes, quiet midnight talks with friends or loved ones too rarely seen, and moments of spiritual communion when peace on earth seems more than a song title. These are all things that allow us to re-establish our connections to the timeless.
Our advice: take advantage of the opportunity to gorge on the respite from change. Deliver meals or small presents to shut-ins. Make the rounds with a caroling group. Or more simply, share the good fellowship that inevitably comes with a Christmas Day walk.
We wish all a very merry Christmas and happy holiday season filled with moments that will freeze into new memories.

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