Saturday, December 17, 2011

Let's Call It A Year

words by Kimberly Mackowski, music by Beth Sablay

Maybe it’s just me, but when the ball dropped and 2011 arrived, I bid 2010 a very hearty farewell.  2010 had been a very difficult year, particularly with the loss of my mother.  I missed her dearly, and miss her every day.  But, somehow, I felt that beginning a new year might change things. A fresh start. Yes, I would still miss her, but we were moving forward. My sisters, my family, had weathered the storm, and we were all still here, forging new memories and remembering old ones.

Somehow, though, 2011 didn’t go as well as I’d hoped. It was difficult in other ways. And I know many who were challenged this year. Who suffered loss, difficult changes, heartbreak, loneliness. Who said goodbye to loved ones far too soon. And it seems, every day, we hear of some tragedy taking place.  People losing their jobs, their homes, their health. Sometimes it seems as if the entire world is set to self-destruct.

And then the holidays circle around again. First, it seems as if it starts too early. Stores put up Christmas displays in October. Christmas music starts playing before Thanksgiving. We grouse. Complain about the commercialism, while we rush around shopping for gifts, and writing out Christmas cards. But there is something about the season, even with all the commercial trappings, that makes it different from the rest of the year.  It’s as if we’re trying to conjure up all the generosity and kindness we fell short of in the past eleven months. The clock is ticking and we’ve got to fit as much in as possible before the year ends.

And what’s wrong with that? Really. What’s wrong with being a little kinder? Offering a hand to someone in need? Sharing a smile, a happy greeting, being just a little nicer to those we love, and those we meet along the way. I only wish it would last longer. The cheer and forgiveness, the gestures of kindness, letting those we love know just how much we do love them.

When 2012 exits, I will not be sorry to see it go. And yet, each day of December, I’m aware that the holiday season surrounds me and I long for a moment to just be still and enjoy it. To take in the beauty of a twinkling Christmas tree, be with the ones I love, and to listen to the music of the season.

The songs say it all. All we have to do is listen.

Wishing you the happiest of holidays. And blessings of love and hope for the coming year.