There’s this thing I do every year at about this time. I grab all my favorite TV shows and I go through and watch all the Christmas episodes. It’s a little tradition that I’ve been doing for awhile, but that has taken on a new meaning this year.
To borrow a phrase from Community (one of my new favorites) it’s been a dark year.
I almost don’t feel right saying that, because I know so many people who have been through so much worse than I have this year, but it’s true. Nothing especially tragic has happened, just small stresses that add up to one long and difficult year. Honestly, I’m just glad to be (almost) done with it.
I have a theory. Last year was a fantastic year (two months of it spent traveling — the fulfillment of a lifelong dream) but Christmas was kind of blah. This year was a dark one, but I think the darkness has made us value the holiday season so much more. Lights shine brighter in the dark.
Every time I do something Christmassy, every cookie I bake, every bit of tinsel I string, every present I buy, things seem just that little bit brighter. Christmas is my personal mission this year. It will happen. It will be great. My soul needs this.
I need the joy of Christmas carols, church services, gift giving and Christmas food. I need to pause and think about the wonderful things in the world — the bright lights among the darkness. And I need to find a way to be that bright light, in my own little corner of the world, for someone else.
To quote Castle, another of my favorites: “I love that feeling, that sense of hope. It’s crazy, you know? On the shortest, darkest days of the year, people of all faiths celebrate the light.”
Here’s a little light for you this Christmas (please ignore the mess):