Yaay..It’s the holiday season again! Time for Jingle Bells and Santas, those ugly Christmas sweaters and endless gift wrappings and love and laugher at the warmth of the fireplace. I can really feel the holiday here in Minneapolis, with snow all over ,Xmas trees and lights adorning every nook and corner, streets with cheerful crowds, defying the freezing temperatures and the long lines at Santas’ place with such cute little ones so adorably dressed to get a pic clicked with him. It’s magical.
Growing up in India, especially in Kerala, the southernmost state of India, having a white Christmas was a far-fetched dream. We never even had any good winters. It’s just that during December nights, we used to have pleasant temperatures just touching the 70s.Yeah..that was winter for us!!Life has surely taken me places.
Though I was raised a Hindu, we have always celebrated Xmas in our own ways. We used to hang a Star in front of our house at the start of the December itself as is the tradition there and decorate a small plant in our front yard and make it look somewhat like a Christmas tree. Making a small list of those whom we wished to buy Xmas cards for and going with my dad to buy them was sure a big deal then. Hey, do you remember those musical cards that used to play Jingle Bells when you opened them? One of my friends who went abroad, sent me such a card once when I was in 5th grade and I was over the moon. They were such a rarity and a costly affair for us to afford. And on the 24th night, we used to stay up till midnight waiting for the Christmas Carol to arrive and see Santa Claus who gave us candies. Oh, how can I forget those scrumptious plum cakes that our neighbors and friends used to bring home!
That used to be my Christmas for major part of my life and at times I wish it remained the same. Today, we, as a family, are trying to create our own traditions and memories, especially for our little one. We may still not be celebrating it in such a grand fashion, but this will surely be remembered as a season of joy. And that is what I wish for him. Of late, I have been seeing a lot of posts on social media about holiday stress and how people are getting exhausted of the never ending holiday To-Do lists. And this isn’t just about Christmas. I saw similar posts around October too,during one of the major Indian festival seasons. Isn’t this taking away the very essence of the festivals? Like every other thing, this is also becoming another set of tasks to be ticked off. People are running constantly to create that perfect holiday. But who defines perfection? That’s the question to ponder about. Whether to go by someone else’s idea of perfection or create your own.
A holiday should be a holiday, a day of love and togetherness and definitely not an additional stress factor for us. Slow down and be easy on you and what you have to do. Let this be a time for all of us to wind down and enjoy and be with friends and family. And that’s my prayer and wish for this year.
Merry Christmas Everyone!
The Ardent HR