Today is one of those days when I reflect, for many reasons.
Twenty-six years ago today, my brother-in-law died. I never got to meet him. I wish every day that I had.
Fifteen years ago today, my husband asked me to marry him. I wonder how many days over the past fifteen years he regrets asking, but I know how tremendously grateful I am that he asked.
This day always seems to be a mixed bag.
Lots of people I know are struggling right now. 2015 has been a difficult year for many people I know. There's been death, strokes, cancer, surgeries, heart attacks ... and that's just the tip of the iceberg. I know so many people who are struggling right now. Depression and anxiety are at an all time high. Marriages are being pushed to the breaking point. Some beyond that. The stress of the season is certainly bearing down.
There's simply too much to do and not enough hours in which to do it.
That's how I've been feeling, especially this last week as I ran from one activity to another. Trying to finish up shopping, start wrapping, address Christmas cards (which took almost 2 weeks to arrive from when I ordered them), finish decorating.
Both the kids and myself are in school through Wednesday, which leaves little time for those last minute things. I tossed and turned much of last night worrying about how to get everything in.
Work today was not the best. There were times when I wanted to pull my hair out. But I made it through the day, hit the grocery store, and then was able to come home for the evening. Yes, my pajamas were on by 4:30 pm. Don't judge me.
This evening, I received a gift. The gift of time. Time to relax. Time to put on Christmas music and set up my village (the last thing to do to decorate). My cards are in the mail. My packages are on their way out of town. My kids were able to get their homework done without rushing, and even have time to play with their toys and with each other (sounds simple, but it's a true luxury on a school night).
As I put on the radio to provide a soundtrack while I put out my Dicken's Village, for the first time this year, I heard my favorite Christmas song. It's Christmas Wrapping by The Waitresses. I love it so much that it was the inspiration for my holiday novella, Completions and Connections.
That alone was enough to put me in a good mood. Then I logged onto my computer. I had an email from a complete stranger telling me how much they enjoyed one of my books, as well as a message from a grade school classmate looking to buy some books to give as Christmas gifts. I received Christmas cards from my best friend and my best internet friend, who is really one of my best friends period.
I know that in the midst of all the bad, in the midst of death and illness and people behaving poorly, my cup is not half full. My cup runneth over. There may be some drops spilled here and there, but certainly nothing I can't handle. If someone wants to complain that my cards are late, let them. I may not bake a thousand cookies this year. It's fine. We're not going to starve. I can sit back, look at what I have around me, especially my wonderful family and friends, and toast to a wonderful life.
I hope that for those of you struggling, you find some solace and peace, and that soon, your cup runneth over as well.