Monday, December 24, 2012

“No, Your Past”

In a “Christmas Carol”, Scrooge asks the Ghost of Christmas Past if the spirit will be showing him Christmases of long past. The Ghost responds by saying “No, your past.” The bitter sweetness of the Christmas holiday is found in our individual pasts. I think growing up, and if we are lucky, into our young adult years, we experience a golden time. Though I do not think we recognize it while we are in it, we certainly long for it when it has past. The golden time for me was when all those I cared for and loved were alive and in my life.

One of my fondest memories of Christmas was sitting on the kitchen floor with my brother playing with Christmas toys, while my mother prepared for dinner and the arrival of my grandparents. Growing up in New York City both sides of my family lived in close proximity to each other. We were all within a short train, cab, or bus ride from each other. Drop ins on Christmas day were both welcomed and expected. We had a steady stream of family, friends, and neighbors dropping in for coffee and a Christmas drink. All came bearing gifts and all received gifts back from my family. On other holidays, we too made our rounds, but not on Christmas. My father insisted that we stay home on Christmas because he knew my brother and I would be miserable having to part with our toys, if even for a short time. I love him for that even today.

That was my golden time and sadly, it exists no more. It came to and end much too soon with the death of my brother while we were still small children.  I realize that I was lucky to have a golden time, as I know some kids never did. I hope they find it as an adult because everyone deserves a golden time or two in their lifetime. I woke up today missing my golden time and the people that are no longer with me. I lost my last and closest grandparent a few years back. She was my mom’s mom and though she lived until 92, I still think she left us too soon. I lost my other grandparents years before that, and my brother an even longer time ago. There are also a host of friends and other relatives that left us much too soon, and I remember them all today. In my mind, I can pick one memory that is unique to each of them, and I honor them by recalling it today. I do so with the mixed emotions of the Christmas holiday.

I do not mind my sadness, and I have learned to embrace it as I do any other emotion. In this case, I find it useful because it helps bring to mind the memory of those lost but still loved. Tomorrow I will focus on what I have today. I am luckier than most as I am loved very much by my husband, parents, and friends. I believe, if there is a God, I am also loved by him, and as he created me.

Did I mention you could have more than one Golden time in your life?  If you have never had a golden time, make one. All you need is you, the belief that you can,and most importantly this truth, you deserve one! You deserve one because you are a perfect meaningful creation and an important part of  life's soul just as you are and were created to be. Anything else is a lie.

My husband and I are in the midst of creating our own golden time. This golden time of my life is different in that I have an adult's mind to recognize it with while I am in it, and enough of a child’s heart left to see it’s magic.



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