December 26, 2013

Holiday Blessings

The Holidays are fun for some, sad for others, both for many of us.  I grew up without much in the way of celebrations and having my birthday at the end of December when people were out of town or out of money or getting ready for New Year’s Eve parties only made me feel more lonely.  So move ahead many years and I learned to create my own celebrations, invite my favorite people, and create traditions that were warm and happy and fun.  

And that certainly describes our Wow Holiday Potluck, always at the end of the year in the midst of the Holidays and usually held at the home of one of our founding Wowettes, a lovely and candle-filled home brimming with warmth and a cheerful host.   It was hard to plan this year, with holidays being in the middle of the week, and I wasn’t surprised at a smaller than usual group attending.  But wow, did they make up for it in silliness, great stories, and generally being happy that we were together.

The tradition that we created many years ago was to enjoy our yummy potluck and then gather our chairs in a circle to share our hopes and wishes for the New Year.  But we do it in a special way by expressing ourselves by starting with “I am”,  instead of “I will…” or “I hope to be…”. We say it in the now, making it real, as if we are already experiencing what we wish will come in the future.

Here is what the ladies shared:
“I’m thin and happy and my cousin is doing well and I’m healthy.”
“I am exercising more, taking care of myself, happy as a single woman, continuing to enjoy the company of these wonderful women.”
“I am traveling and winning the lottery.”
“I am no longer worried about my mom or daughter.  I am continuing to be content in my own life and wish it for my friends.”
“I am content and serene and know that I am enough.”
“I am happy and joyful and in love with myself unconditionally.”
“I am eating healthier, following healthier routines, de-cluttering my life, and getting organized.”
“I am the best mother, sister, girlfriend, and friend…and I am my own best friend.”
“I am very happy to be invited to this home, to be the mother of two beautiful children, happy to be what I am, and continue to enjoy my volunteer work.”
“I am continuing to life in confidence, continuing to walk through my fears and no longer let them run my life, and continuing to think of myself as a loveable and precious person.”

I was surprised, and pleasantly so, that the predominant thread was of self-acceptance, inner peace, and enjoying what we have and who we are.  I’ve spent most of my life learning to recognize my inner demons, repair damage from my early years and troubled family, and create a peaceful life for myself.   Each of us, in our own way, has our own demons that threaten our happiness, whether we recognize them or not.  Having a safe and warm and nurturing place to share these dark places in our lives and how we have grown past them and how we finally feel peace is priceless.  We are an eclectic group of women, yet coming together to love and laugh and share our hearts is a great gift we give each other.  Your openness and courage give me strength to continue on my path of healing and happiness and for that I am very grateful.