At our house, we focused on creating a kick-ass meal, Zoomed with one side of the family in the morning and then the other side in the evening. It was a great day; the weather even cleared in the afternoon for a beautiful walk at dusk along the river.
The year 2020 is a practice in managing expectations. Arriving at the doorstep of our tenth month of pandemic living, I’m finding that noticing the losses hasn’t gotten easier, but learning how to adjust my expectations has.
So, for the coming month of holiday traditions, I’m going to let go of the expectations of what makes a holiday. Instead of, “It won’t be the holidays without [fill in the blank],” I’m going to try, “I miss [fill in the blank]” or “It’s hard not to have [fill in the blank].”
It feels important to acknowledge the losses and not try to brush them off. It also feels important to appreciate what is here. Quieter days with fewer commitments, kids home with a longer school break. If we end up with December snow, perhaps I can convince them to go snowshoeing with me (for the record, I am not above bribing my teenagers).
I notice myself starting to feel excited at the possibilities. A bunch of ideas for how to fill our less social calendar just went flying through my mind. But I’m hitting the pause button on those. Because I don’t want it to be about finding new ways to be busy in December.
I want it to be about savoring.
And just as I ask myself the question, “what do I want to be savoring,” it dawns on me that this could be the last year of the five of us being home together as a family for the whole month of December.
Well, that’s a sucker punch.
If my daughter decides to go away to college next year, we’ll be learning a new way of being together at the holidays.
And so I’m writing out the word savour (for a little British flair) and tacking it to the fridge.
What if this year is a gift for me? I have the opportunity to be more intentional this holiday season, soak up the time with my kids and husband. Not much more is required.
December 2020 has arrived, and I’m appreciating what is already here: an opportunity for SAVORING.
What would it look like to release your expectations? What do you want to be savoring during this time?
Jessica Curtis is a professional life coach who helps people cultivate intention and live from a place of meaning and authenticity. If you think you could benefit from working with Jessica or want to invite her to work with your group, reach out to start a conversation.