I’ve been thinking quite a lot lately about my Christmas post of last year, http://redroom.com/member/jill-moore/blog/a-christmas-miracle. What a dismal Christmas that was for me. I missed my children, I missed my friends and I missed a religion-based faith that I no longer found solace in. Yes, it was decidedly a very lonely and sad Christmas last year.
This year is vastly different. As I think back to last Christmas and how I was feeling, I realize that I have gone through several profound changes in this last year. First and foremost, I have embraced the Buddhist philosophy of love and compassion. I can’t really call this a religion. I do not go to temple. I do not pray. What I do is to try to find love and compassion for every human being I come in contact with, directly or indirectly. And that extends even to me. To my very fragile and flawed self.
Recently, someone I love very dearly hurt me very badly. There was, of course, the moment of angry confrontation when I let my words fly like stinging arrows. There was the gnawing feeling in the pit of my stomach that I had been wronged, that I did not deserve such treatment, that perhaps I shouldn't have this person in my life. There were tears for what I perceived to be a hurt so deep that it could not be healed.
Once the fury and waterworks subsided, I returned to my Buddhist philosophy for help and understanding and this is what I found:
Nothing in this life is permanent. We are given people and things as temporary gifts to cherish and love. Everyone suffers and sometimes, another person’s suffering leads them to hurt you. To have true love, unconditional and unfettered, that asks for nothing in return; to have true compassion that overrides your own feelings and seeks to understand the suffering and sorrow of another and to provide comfort, even in your own anger and grief; these are the things that sustain me. These guiding principles are what make me able to forgive, to move on, to love.
They are also what make this Christmas so different for me. This year, I find joy in the joy of others. I glean great happiness from the lovely Christmas lights and the festivities. My heart is full…brimming over really…with the Christmas spirit. Because now I know. Now I understand. It is about love. It doesn’t matter what religion you are or what holiday you celebrate. This is a time of great joy. It is the time to celebrate our love for one another.
I ended last year’s post with this:
So, I guess that's my problem this year. It doesn't feel real for me. It feels tainted and lost and tarnished. It will never be shiny and new again. Not like it was when Zoe wore a tiny Santa suit or Gracie still believed. But maybe if I get a little tree, drink egg nog and watch "It's a Wonderful Life", I will feel better.
And that would be a Christmas miracle.
This year, I will end with this: I will get a little tree and I will drink some egg nog. I will watch It’s a Wonderful Life and I will wait with great anticipation to see my children on December 29th. I will enjoy all that this season has to offer. And everywhere I go and in everything I do, there will be love.
And that, my friends, is a Christmas miracle.