Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Christmas Cliches

I love Christmas. I love all of it. And I don’t feel put upon that I try to accomplish so much at this time of year. I don't want to miss anything. I’m glad to do it all, inspired to do it. But doing it all takes a lot of energy – mental energy, like production week – and sometimes I need a breather to put the energy back. I’ll be a better Mrs. Claus/Supermom tomorrow because of it.

The only thing I don’t love about Christmas is the pressure of knowing I only have one shot at it. I only get one chance to do Christmas of Fifth and Fourth grade, just like I had only one senior year in high school Christmas and one Last Christmas Before Kids Christmas. I don’t want to squander my chance at creating something meaningful and full of light because I’m lazy or inattentive, or on the other end, too busy and focused. And not because I feel like I have to. I want to. I want to know that when this special time of year came, I was ready for it, made room for it, welcomed it and allowed myself to be inspired. I think maybe that’s the heart of it all. The love I feel at Christmastime inspires me, right down to the bottom of my soul. The love I express through the gifts I give and the conversations I have and the surge of love just from singing with John Denver and the Muppets in my car. This love helps me remember to fill the freaking elf doors every night. It makes me take the time to write the note or make the gift that will show my appreciation for the many wonders and miracles in my life, my family, my exquisite friends. And it has staying power.

Every year, we have this Christmas party. Elise and I started it during the first year we lived together, and it has grown to be a yearly reunion of our college friends. The event that we just don’t miss. We had to reschedule it two different years, and made it something else like Faux Valentine’s, but it wasn’t the same. It’s the Christmas that matters. People take that valuable last Saturday before Christmas, when there are lots of other worthwhile things to be doing, and they come to our house in the cold – bring their babies or pay a babysitter or borrow the car. These fine, fine people who are contributing to the world and being all sexy and brilliant come to my house, because it’s Christmastime, and we all belong together at Christmas. I feel so humbled by that.

And I love Christmas for the shared recognition that there really is a Santa Claus, and he is part of all of us, and that a baby was born that brought hope and inspiration to so many and made people live better in his name. That Faithful Friends Who are Dear to Us are, indeed, the dearest of all, the ones you live for, cherish, admire. These are the friends who help you be a better person, because you know they love you, and you aspire to be the best of the person they think you are.

I don’t even know if that makes sense. I only know that I honor Christmas in my heart and try to keep it all the year. I live in the Past, the Present and the Future, and I live open-hearted to the lessons the Universe is teaching. And every Christmas, under the spell of twinkle lights and eggnog and Hallmark movies, I reaffirm that pledge and start anew.

This is a song that I love by Nancy LaMott, called “All Those Christmas Cliches.” It’s on the mix CD I made to remember this Christmas by, along with two songs from Glee and “True Blue Miracle” from the Sesame Street Muppets…and a bunch of other stuff. I will totally make you a copy if you want one…it’s what Christmas sounds like in Kelly’s Head.

Anyhoo…here are the lyrics…

I’ve spent Christmas in Peoria, Christmas in Schenectedy, Christmas in Las Vegas and L.A.

And I always thought it couldn’t matter less, But lately, come December, I confess

I want the tree full of toys and tinsel, I want the wreath on the red front door

I want the elves in the yard and each sentimental card dripping glitter on the floor

I want a roof full of plywood reindeer, I want a road full of horse-drawn sleighs

All Those Christmas Cliches

I want the turkey with all the trimmings, the turkey mom hardly ever made

I want the gulp and tear at the moment that I hear Johnny Mathis being played

I want a lake full of perfect skaters, I want that fruit cake with sugar glaze

All Those Christmas Cliches

Not to mention the snow, not to mention the choir, not to mention the candles in the window, and chestnuts roasting on the fire

Inside a house filled with noise and laughter along a street bathed in twinkling light

I want the bells and the drums, mistletoe and sugar plums, and kids to tuck in tight

And as for that guy in the bright red outfit, instead of flying off he stays

All Those Christmas Cliches

I want those overblown, corny, heartwarming, Hallmark Christmas cliches.

1 comment:

  1. I love you, hope it was merry. And happy new year too, let's talk soon.