I finished putting out Christmas decorations and tucking the pine into the planters by the front door. I realized after two days I hadn’t even scratched the surface of Christmas decorating of the past. The pictures with Santa from their first to her last are still safely packed away. We are taking his lead on what we do this year.
He said- maybe we just put out the Santa picture from last year.
I suggested maybe the tree should go in the family room.
He said-maybe we just make oatmeal cookies.
With each decision, I pray for strength as we maneuver this minefield of new normals. I pray we don’t mess this up.
I opened a tote looking for the things he asked me to put out and there they were- all her favorite Christmas things. At the very top was her button tree with the stuffed ornaments exactly where she hung them last year. And hanging from one of the buttons- a wise man quietly kneeling.
We have resolved not to just “do Christmas” because it has never been about “doing Christmas.” In being very aware of what we do and each decision we make that I realize the irony- it is the quiet. Quiet stillness is the Christmas for which I have always worked so hard. It’s the quiet calm that surrounds the nativities to which I am drawn. It’s in the quiet of the dark of night when the brightest stars cast their warm glow over those standing in awe of the manger. There they are, just like the wise man hanging from her button tree, not saying a word- but content being quietly in awe. Now, in the quiet that is Christmas, I am among those standing vigil beside the manger- in awe that, because of the beautiful baby, I will see Catherine again.