Winter Wonderland!

Winter Wonderland!

Embracing Your Bliss during the holidays can certainly require an intentional commitment to remain peaceful!

This morning I went to our neighborhood Bruegger's to made a grocery list before I braved Cub foods.  At the table next to me, four siblings were rehashing their childhood.  One sister remarked, "I don't remember a happy moment about you after age 7."  The sibling responded, "Well, I remember dad hitting me over the head with that thing and I still have a scar."  The other said, "I am afraid to have children because I don't want to be like him."  The 4th seemed to be the peacemaker and suggested, "If you want to approach dad, you will have to do it in a calm way because he will really be defensive." I couldn't help but feel sad for these 20 somethings--for their traumatic childhood memories/  I also feel sorry for their father.  Parentings is NOT an easy task but neither is being a survivor of any type of childhood trauma.  I wonder how their holiday experience will be for them?

After this table left, a very sweet girl around 4 sat down with her full bearded, stocking capped father.  When she finished her bagel, dad began to brush out her long blond hair. He said to her, "Your hair is getting so long.  Do you want to keep it long or is it time to get it cut."  She responded very clearly, "I am going to grow it long like Rapunzel dad so I can drop it out the window one day."  The dad laughed and continued to reposition her head so he could gently brush out the tangles.  I was touched by the gentleness this dad demonstrated while combing his daughters hair.  I wonder how their holiday experience will be?  Something tells me it may be more tender than the previous table occupants.

Two very different table experiences in the short time I sat with my coffee and yet I carried them with me throughout the day.

Bringing joy to the world can be very easy during the holidays.  There are opportunities for presents, sharing family time and worshiping in our own sacred traditions.  And yet, as the first table of 4 demonstrated, dark memories can shade our own feelings of joy, leaving us empty and disappointed.

I believe it is never to late to embrace our bliss--awakening our own spirits of love and joy.  But it isn't always easy amidst this holiday season.

It is my wish that we can offer some grace to those who have caused us pain as well as bring joy to others who may still be living in dark times.

Tomorrow my three children will come over along with my parents and we will celebrate Christmas eve for the first time at my new home with my new husband.  New traditions are being created and old ones left behind.  I have shed a few tears this week for what has changed.  I also count my blessings for the wonderful life I am creating with my new husband.  It need not be either or--old or new--but rather how do we blend things we love, wave goodbye to things that have changed and give thanks for all the joy to come?

May we all be blessed with gratitude, good health and good cheer!

PS - A couple new beautiful things to post:  tags using grunge paper, distressed stamping, embossing, stamping--just lots of playing with new techniques!

Blissfully, Susan

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def. Bliss: -noun Supreme Happiness, Utter Joy/Contentment; the Joy of Paradise!