My goal is the same every year: to construct an atmosphere in my home that family and friends find festive and cheerful for the holidays. Something different, something special. As I drag out the boxes of decorations and put up the tree, Christmas music drifts through the house. I spend hours putting each ornament in just the right spot on the tree. I make sure there is equal distance between the candles on the fireplace. I iron the stockings so they dangle perfectly from the mantle. There is color everywhere! Towards the end of the day, I find myself longing for normalcy. If my objective was cohesive style, I fear I have failed. I’m not sure I like what I see!
By the time I finish tweaking the decor, it is night. I fix my gaze on the sparkle of the tree; its lights are the only thing in the room with me besides darkness. Because no other sounds distract me, I can almost hear the frazzled thoughts as they leave my mind, like tiny bees taking nectar from a rose. Who cares if things aren’t perfect? I begin to think of the holidays as a book. During the day, I can open the book to all the merry, jolly, jumbled pages for the sake of the season. At night, I can close the book all together for the sake of my own peace of mind.
I find myself enchanted by the lights on the tree and I sense an atmosphere of festive joy. Hadn’t that been my goal all along?