Sunday, December 20, 2015
A plate of joy with a side of grief, please. (said no one, ever)
The Girls are in the north end of the property, cleaning things up and enjoying a fine buffet of weeds, new grasses and some pomegranate seeds thrown in for good measure. We human types are inside, watching Big Crosby and Danny Kaye hoof it up in "White Christmas." Yup, it's wintertime at the homestead.
We've found ourselves collaterally shocked by two events in the last week. One was a friend's sibling, critically injured in a car accident last week that was the result of a DUI. The other was a divorce between a couple I see on a very regular basis at the winery.
Both these sorts of things make you realize how fragile the holiday season is. We spend so much time working up towards the perfect Thanksgiving, Hanukah, or Christmas. And occasionally, all that work and all those expectations end up marred by a tragedy. It makes you realize in many ways, it's just another day on earth and it might be silly to expect so much from it, what with life happening all around us ... and sometimes to us.
My own father went into hospice around the holidays 32 years ago and although I've certainly found my joy again, it took awhile before my Christmases were no longer saddened by that memory. And so it is for many of us this year, including the two families mentioned above.
So if you're having a joyous season, celebrate it with all your heart, all your happiness, and all your family or friends you bring close to you this time of year. Keep your expectations low so you can be impressed by how well it all actually turns out. Even the Grade C+ holidays should be celebrated for the wonderful, less-than-perfect normalcy they are. That's because things could have been (or may someday be) much less cheerful and bright than they are right now, even though right now probably comes with its own side plate of annoyances and petty grievances.
Take your joy anywhere you find it, imperfect as it is, and hold on for dear life, friends.