It’s one of those spinning plate seasons where I’ve got multiple things in the air and trying to keep any one thing from crashing down and still walk in a straight line.
Yesterday my glasses went missing. This is a sure sign of being off balance because they are usually on my face or in my pocket - always nearby, in other words, because I need them to read most things these days. I did finally find them at bedtime - they had fallen under the bed (I swear I had looked there at least twice) probably first thing in the morning.
I’m realizing that perhaps balance isn’t the right goal. Things come in waves at the holidays and excess is a theme in our culture, so it makes sense that I would feel out of balance. I can, however, check in with myself around alignment. Does this request on my time line up with my values and what feels important right now?
Am I honoring my values of pace and presence?
Do I want to stretch myself here for the sake of something? What are the potential costs and benefits?
Am I in alignment with my commitment to peace and purpose?
It’s much easier to say no to something or take a task off my to-do list if I have checked in with myself about how it aligns with my priorities. That may mean attending one less cookie swap or purchasing one less hostess gift. It may mean having fewer presents under the tree or sending out only a few Christmas cards to elderly friends and relatives who we don’t get to see often enough.
And that’s okay. I’ve embraced good enough parenting and can get behind good enough holidays, too.
Slowing down enough to make those conscious choices helps me realize that what I really want to cultivate in these shortest of days is a generosity of spirit, a harboring of faith and a kindling of hope for the coming year.
May we all enter into the precious days of the season one footfall at a time, aware of our blessings, our gifts and the presence of grace.