Thursday, January 21, 2016
Picking up the needles
Packing up the Christmas decorations was hard for me this year. It is always hard for me but I think this year I finally figured out what bothers me so much about it. As I pack up ornaments and pick pine needles out of every nook and cranny I feel such a sense of dread. I used to believe it was due to the holidays being over and that feel of the holiday season that I love so much being packed up and boxed away for another year.
As I packed up the Santas and the home made pot holders with my kids kindergarten hands shaped like reindeer on them I realized that a big part of what I feel is an almost paralyzing fear of the unknown. These items that are going in their boxes are not things that are taken out monthly or weekly - they are going away for almost a year. A year is a long time and we have no idea what our lives will look like a year from now. The next time these ornaments or that Santa makes an appearance, someone could be sick or no longer with us - we could be facing challenges we know nothing about right now.
I realize that unless we possess and know how to use a crystal ball, unknowing is the very essence of the future, but for some reason right after Christmas it hits me hardest. It always has, I just never realized what exactly it was until now. This Christmas it was even harder as I read Facebook posts from an old friend who is facing cancer for the second time. Cancer that he was told he was clean of a month before. I don't know how that can happen - and it makes me so sad for him and scared for people that receive a good diagnosis that their situation can change on a dime.
I am extremely blessed in this life, sometimes so much so that I feel like I am just waiting for the rug to be pulled out from under me. I hate to think that way so I try to be as positive as I can. I add my yearly notes into the boxes of the ornaments I chose for the kids and whisper silent prayers in my head over nativity scenes and stuffed reindeer that the next time we are getting ready to celebrate Christmas things will be as good or better than they are now.
Once the boxes are put up in the basement and the house is empty and clutter free the positive energy starts to flow back in. I love that feeling too - the new year feeling of hope and potential - the affirmations that run through my head of this year I can be better.
Maybe that is just the way it works. Maybe I need the terrifying low to feel the hopeful high. These three making pine needle snow showers in their pajamas always help too.