I sit here in the glow of a twinkling tree. It is my in-law’s tree. It is Dave’s parent’s tree. It is the tree of the only parents I have anymore.
My eyes feast upon the bird feeders that gather feathery visitors of brown, yellow, blue, and grey. Flashes of red draw my attention to a couple-eternal of cardinals.
Acoustic Christmas music caresses my ears, wrapping my heart in a bow. A melody of holiday angels.
It is the first time this season I have let myself feel Christmas. Nostalgia drips from my eyes and rolls down my cheeks. My folded hands are now wet.
Back “home” in Brazil, the ocean calls to me.
I hear its thunderous heartbeat from miles away. I feel its rolling cadence kneading my spirit. I meditate on my breath, thinking of concentric inhales and exhales, waves kissing the sandy shore of my soul. I bathe in the monthly light of the moon, a recurrent concealing and unveiling of a divine mystery–the slow, secret wink of a goddess.
Our modern-day technology deceives us.
There is no calendar app to sync with the ancient, enduring, authentic meter of life. There is no alarm that vibrates when it is time to reconnect with nature, family, death, or–worst yet–ourselves.
There is so much noise and very little listening. Cars and radios and TVs and fireworks and honking and cranes and complaining and evasive eyes and white noise and racist poses and Pavlov’s bells and to-dos and exhausted yeses and meaningless nos and.
The holidays are an anchor, tethering us to the rhythm of life.
They demand us to stop.
They force us to grieve.
They invite us to connect.
They remind us to breathe.
They demand us to remember.
They urge us to reflect.
They inspire us to be.