A Gift

From suffering to peace.

In an effort to make sense of this holiday season, today I started to think about what are the gifts that 2016 stands for in my life. As life unfolds, every year really does make for a different experience and gives us a different reference point.

Christmas Eve is such a fun day. It feels like the gift of a moment when your real life is put on hold and you can take a breath to maybe tap into something that you don’t get to because of the usual hustle and bustle. No surprise that I headed to yoga to take this day on. And on my mat was the usual gift of tapping in to a level of my life that I rarely find possible in other settings. As I waited for class to start, I closed my eyes and thought what is the gift I would ask for if I really did have the luxury of sitting on Santa’s lap and the dream that it would come true. And there it was just as plain as day…the tears. Tears that you thought were gone and had been cried enough. It was the tears of missing my brother. This is the 6th Christmas that I will have without him. My heart can make it through so much. This year was no exception. And when Christmas rolls around I realize I need nothing…but, if I could be asked what do I want? I want my brother back.

Just that simple. 

He was the one piece of my heart that still aches. 

He is the one person that could make this holiday complete. But acceptance is all I am left with. After the tears poured, it brought me to another place of understanding. The reality that life is hard. That when life is hard, we get to accept the invitation to find softness in our heart. Maybe the suffering that we face as humans is only to make us learn how to feel the true peace in our heart and to start the most treacherous journey of acceptance. 

All of this to make me realize that Christmas time is nothing more than a chance to see what we can bring to our lives in that metaphor of a manger. What is the little child that you want to foster in your heart and grow into something larger in your life? What is a tiny spark of light that is in you? What can you bring to this planet that is something only you can do?  

Through the chapters of pain and loss, it is still our job to find our way. As I keep walking down this path of life, I will use this holiday season of lights on trees to remind me of that tiny light in my heart that remembers love and joy even when sadness can feel overwhelming. 

Maybe light a candle. Maybe just stare at the Christmas tree. Just a moment to connect with your heart and what is buried there to feed your soul for another year. With love and joy. Happy Holidays!

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