I’ve scratched my head for the last week, trying to find a topic I could write with genuine emotion on the subject of the holidays, and I’ve arrived at the feeling of nostalgia. Yesterday, despite my growing rebellion against commerce-driven, faux cheer, I joined the hustle and bustle of shopping and ended up in several antique stores, where, oh, wow, the nostalgia wafted from every pore!
As I walked around covertly making photos with my iPhone, I really went down the rabbit hole of Christmas Past. I could practically feel the Silent Night, Holy Night seeping into my hungry heart, and I came home so grateful that I got a taste of that childlike tenderness again. My eyes fill up a little right now as I write about it.
In one of the shops I had an encounter with this beautiful and battered statue of Mary. Her eyes went right into me. I suppose I had fallen into a kind of hypnosis, what with all the artifacts of times gone by, and soft carols on the sound system, but I found myself completely caught in her gaze. It was as if she were speaking with me through her eyes and marred face…encouraging me to yes, touch with fondness those sweet, early memories, but more importantly, to use the nostalgia as an emotional stepping stone to embrace with my whole heart the precious now, dings, bruises, mileage and all…not to go numb and count the days till 2016, which I have to admit, has been my urge.
So I’m practicing…as I write this piece, and as I move forward through the remainder of the holidays…taking time to breathe all the way down, past and through the voices of resistance, chaos and habitual overwhelm to that holy place inside where magic and wonder are still alive and well.
I wish this for you too, during these last days of 2015…that you have a moment or two of reverence, of awe. Hug someone and feel them hug you back. Listen to sweet music and let it pour over you like rain. Walk outside in the dead of night and look up at the majesty of the sky. As challenging as it may sometimes seem to experience, LOVE is right here, in THIS moment, in the most basic of things, ever available if we give it our attention.