Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Holiday Season or Twilight Zone. Maybe both

We have entered that time of the year called the holiday season. I can picture Rod Sirling standing in his suit, hands folded in front of him with a dead pan expression saying, "Welcome to the holiday season." In the background, the theme from the Twilight Zone can be heard. For those of you too young to remember, the Twilight Zone was a weekly horror series on TV where there was always a twist at the end that you never expected (it had nothing to do with vampires or Team Edward). The holiday season is a twilight zone unto itself. How? Let's see. . .

From some time in the middle of November to just after the beginning of the following year, people change. Their normal hectic lives become even more hectic, yet their easily frustrated, grumpy personalities somehow become more tolerant.
As the weather becomes colder, people who are not "people persons" begin to smile and their frosty personalities start to thaw.
Those who are not generous during other times spend countless hours searching for just the right gift to buy people who they only see once a year. They may even give money to the homeless person on the corner who they swore at (under their breath) just a few weeks ago.

Why the change? I'm sure there are as many theories as there are people, but I like to think that during the time we call the holiday season, we become more human. We take a step back and realize how blessed we are. Starting with Thanksgiving, we give thanks for what we have. This enables us to want to help those less fortunate and somehow changes us. This thankfulness changes us and makes us want to reconnect with those people in our lives that we haven't had the time to see or talk to in the past year.
This feeling seems to grow as the December religious holidays draw near. We remember our values and that in turn makes us think about our parents and grandparents. Thoughts of how they conducted their lives makes us want to be a little bit better than we have been.
This seems to culminate with the celebration of the new year. But as the ball drops, the bubble bursts. We start to think about how we want to better ourselves in the coming year and we set New Year's resolutions. The problem is, no matter how noble these resolutions are, we usually choose those that are unreachable. As soon as we break the first resolution, the air squeezes out of the balloon and it, like our lives, flies about at breakneck speeds on a collision course with anything that gets in its way.

I love the holiday season. The time between Thanksgiving and New Year's Day, which in my life reaches its pinnacle at Christmas is a time of reflection, a time of thanks, a time of love and a time of blessed birth. This holiday season let's do what we have done in past seasons, but this year, when the ball drops, instead of resolutions, let's just try to keep the spirit alive.
Happy Thanksgiving,

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