As soon as the last of the clearance Halloween candy is gone, or maybe even before, the shelves of our stores are filled with red and green and silver and gold. Ornaments glisten, trees stand tall, carols sing in the background, and a good number of people start getting grumpy.
“We haven’t had Thanksgiving! Put away the Christmas decorations!” they whine, all the while posting cartoons of turkeys facing off against Santa for the spotlight on social media. Others start chiming in how some people say Merry Christmas and some say Happy Holidays and some just don’t say anything and in the end there are unspoken battles and sometimes I personally am afraid to say anything more than, “can you believe they have this wrapping paper out already?”
The truth is, I am an early Christmas/Holiday lover, and I don’t see why we can’t just lump everything after Halloween into one big happy season of love. And I say the earlier we start, the better. The world is just a better place during these last months of the year.
I speak for myself here, but when I hear a song with jingle bells, I get a little bit happier. I smile at strangers more. I get a little less snippy with my kids and slow people in the bank lane. And when the temperatures start to drop, I start thinking a lot more intensely about the people I care about, and what kind of gift I can give them to really show them I care—what one item would light up their eyes and make my heart feel fuller. I plan meals of warmth, and wonder how many friends I could realistically invite over for dinner to share with them all a meal to thank them all for making my life a greater place.
Come November, I get all gushy inside, filled with gratitude and the magic of the holidays. And really, is there anything wrong with loving a little deeper, caring a little more, and feeling more connected to the light that draws us in as the nights get longer? (If you are a Scrooge, please disregard that question.)
I see no harm in extending the season that always ends so abruptly in a pile of that very same wrapping paper and plates ridden with cookie crumbs. Because when it’s all said and done and January rolls around, I find myself missing the being thankful and the holly jolliness, regardless of what anyone says in the store when you pass by a sparkly ornament and share a grin.
Bring on the carols. Bring on the togetherness. Bring on the happy. And savor every second of it you can.
Originally written 11.8.15