Remembering the Reason for the Season

This Christmas promises to be the most unique that I have probably ever experienced.  A number of unrelated circumstances have chosen to come together to make that a very real likelihood.  Perhaps, this scenario was what the Mayan calendar and all of the other prognosticators were attempting to predict, rather than the full-blown end of the world as we know it.

For as long as I can remember, I’ve typically been on vacation for the last two weeks of December which enabled me to spend the Christmas and New Year’s holidays in close proximity with my family; enjoying every minute of it I might add. That run apparently will come to an end over the next few days.
In no particular order, here are the reasons that I will not be experiencing a classic Currier & Ives Christmas this year.

I’ve recently taken a new job.  Coming after a far too-long period of under-employment, this is generally very welcomed news.  But the reality is that as a new employee, I have no vacation to speak of, thereby making it necessary for me to be at work on both Christmas Eve, as well as the rest of the week beginning the day after Christmas.

Both of my sons have finally graduated from college and have moved out of state.  Very far out of state unfortunately.  The distances involved and their work schedules are also conspiring against the traditional family gathering this holiday season.

My wife is out of state at her parent’s house, where I normally would have been spending the next few days.  She’s there not only to celebrate Christmas with her parents and sisters, but also to help provide care for a seriously ill family member. Clearly she is exactly where she needs to be.

The bottom line is that I’m minding the store back at the family homestead and will probably be celebrating Christmas Day alone.

I guess that it would be possible for me to be a bit down-in-the-mouth over this situation, but I really don’t find myself in that state of mind.  First of all, I’m very thankful for the new job and I’m enjoying working there.  I’m very proud of both of my sons, their accomplishments during their college years, and their efforts at beginning their working careers.  Likewise, I’m very pleased that my spouse will be able to spend Christmas with her family and provide care and support during a trying time for them all.
I will occupy my time enjoying the day off, being thankful for all that I have, and remembering that the reason we celebrate Christmas day is that it marks the birth of Jesus Christ.  At the end of the day, all the rest of the holiday hoopla is nothing more than wrapping paper and eggnog by comparison.

Best wishes to you for a very Merry Christmas, wherever you happen to find yourself this holiday season!