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Comfort and joy

Xmas angel

Ah, Christmas.

That often queasy alignment of hope, expectation, fear and loathing. I hope yours has been good.

As I write this, eating champagne truffles and drinking tea, I can reflect on a day that has been successful. A good gift exchange where everyone got something they wanted, even me. No real disappointments. Sometimes you have to settle for small mercies. Compared to previous extended family, show-stopping, all-stops-pulled-out-and-no-quarter-given Christmas days, this one has been quiet. Just the nuclear family, and that’s fine. We’ve listened to music, eaten a lot but not too much, and spent the day together in the sitting room. That in itself means a lot, when normally we are scattered in separate rooms or insulated by headphones.

We are together, however briefly.

I have learnt to let go of outcome and forgive imperfection in myself and others, at least sometimes. I may not have the perfect Christmas any more, but in its place, something more. Relaxation and gratitude for what is, while letting go of what is not, is a more certain recipe for contentment. And that is no small prize in a frazzled life.

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