I don’t think it will come as a surprise to regular readers over here that I’m not a particularly religious person. And I say that with the proviso that, in my opinion, religion is different from faith. I have a very deep sense of faith. But I’m much more likely to be irreligious (look it up) and irreverent.
So this time of year, I’m all about the pagan celebration. Yes, I can appreciate the hope and love symbolized by a new birth. I’m also totally on board with the sentiment of peace on earth and goodwill to all. And I appreciate any celebration that welcomes the steady return of daylight hours.
But, for me, Christmas is primarily a holiday for children. Yes, it’s about the receipt of gifts. But of greater importance is the joy and generosity of giving. And with that goes anticipation.
I think that’s what I love most about this time of year. Anticipation. Well, other than singing Christmas carols. Inexplicably, the pagan in me just loves singing Christmas carols. Plus the old classics, of course: all the Burl Ives songs, Nat King Cole’s version of The Christmas Song, even Dolly Parton’s Hard Candy Christmas. And so many more. It’s just not Christmas without all the music.
But anticipation. That’s powerful stuff. All that waiting. Not just to see what someone might give you, but the anticipation of seeing the delight on the faces of people to whom you give. Especially if what you give them is homemade, with love, like cookies or fudge.
Oh, the impatience of it all. The build-up of excitement. The sense of time narrowing down from days to hours to minutes. The impending delight.
There’s something childlike and trusting about anticipation. I think we often lose that as adults. We become weary and wary and jaded. And that’s a shame.
So in the spirit of fostering anticipation, I’m posting this to tell you I’m giving you a gift. Yes, sorry, just one gift. You all are going to have to share. It’s not necessarily a Christmas gift, more a gift of the season. Celebrating hope and love and peace and the scents of pine and cinnamon and the presence of handsome sexy— um, you know, all the good stuff that leaves you feeling warm and happy.
What is this gift, you ask? How big is it? What colour is it? Will it match your favourite sweater? Can you return it and get something you really wanted? Is it perishable? OMG, is it chocolate?
WHEN WILL IT ARRIVE?
Well, that remains to be seen.
Ah, ah, ah, no peeking now. No, you may not pick it up and shake it or peel back just that one tiny corner of wrapping paper. Be patient.
Better yet, be impatient.
Anticipation. Did I mention it’s my favourite thing, this time of year?