Right around Halloween is usually when our rollercoaster hits the very top of the highest peak and heads for its rapid decent to the bottom otherwise known as the end of the year. And then all of a sudden January begins and we start the cycle all over again. We just tick tick tick away to the top until Halloween and then we ‘loose our stomachs’ as we plummet to the bottom.
It’s January and I am thankful to have the time to settle down again. I used to feel that the days/weeks after Christmas left me with an empty lonely feeling. I welcomed the chaos October/Halloween brought. I can get caught up in the whirlwind of Halloween decorations and costume shopping, birthday planning for 2 little girls, Thanksgiving and the ever-present ‘self-imposed’ pressure to find the “perfect” gift for each individual person on my list. Then January would come and suddenly I didn’t have chaos anymore. It always seemed so abrupt.
Not so much anymore. I still get caught up in Halloween, birthday planning and holiday preparations, no doubt. This year however, I made a conscious effort to put aside my frustrations and stress in an effort to make it more special for the kids. And boy, it took a lot of time and energy on my part. I kept chanting “fake it till you make it” and lo and behold, my excitement for Christmas and the magic of the holiday’s returned. It wasn’t the ‘magical’ feeling I knew as a child, but it was excitement for how their gifts were going to be arranged on the couches/chairs from Santa on christmas morning, where Jacob (our elf) was going to end up next, and coming up with Christmas art projects for the girls.
Once I was in the Christmas spirit (thanks to Pandora EVERYDAY) I felt free to play into the girls excitement.
Everyone is now at an age where they are figuring out what this whole ‘Santa’ and ‘presents’ thing is all about. Mostly I am referring to Cecilia. Watching Rudolph, Frosty, Mickey Mouse, and Charlie Brown Christmas certainly helped her to grasp the abstract concept of generosity, giving and thinking of others before ourselves. At least that’s what I tell myself. So Christmas was extra fun for everyone this year.
And here we are January 3rd my 39th birthday. All 2015 I would answer the age question with a confident, “I am 39 years old”. Until Greg overheard my answer and of course he said, “If your 39 then I am 41. I am not 41. You are only 38 my dear.” I gained a year of life. Kind of exciting and somewhat sad as it seems ‘forgetfulness’ is already setting in.
So when Cecilia tapped me on the shoulder at 1:00 this morning with a fever and chills, I felt guilty for being relieved. The fate of the day was sealed. We weren’t going anywhere, or doing anything. Fine with me. Though it is my birthday, I have no problem spending a rainy day at home with my family taking care of our sick baby (I use that term VERY loosely) while Abby and Phoebe spend the day playing with their toys.
I no longer feel that ’empty’ ‘let down’ feeling after the holidays. I took the last day of vacation and made the most of it with my family at home. I am looking forward to getting back to the routine I was running from 3 months ago.
I have big plans for our family in 2016.