This year we gathered for two Thanksgiving meals. One a few hours away and one at home. A handful of people around me were lamenting at the over consumption, the excess. At first my thoughts were lining up with these until I found myself, as always looking forward to the holiday. I was driving, thinking about holidays and why as an adult, did I really still find deep joy in celebrating and partaking in these rituals? I grew up, part of a big family. We were eight in total, six children, living in the country we had what we needed and not much more. We spent time creating birthdays, holidays, all simple occasions which were filled with the energy that goes into something that you don’t do everyday, the anticipation of a surprise or a special meal. We played hard, we did our chores, we argued and joked, went to school and some to college and for holidays we were together as much as possible with each other, with friends, with new acquaintances that gathered with us, with cousins.
Some years later with my own family and a husband, nieces and nephews and friends - the holidays are a time for abundance (not in the material sense) and it’s the creating of the abundance and then sharing the abundance that is exciting. For tapping the internal fire and bring it forth to share…
One year a relative ran out at 5 am to purchase a washer and dryer that were marked down enough to make it worth while to go out into that madness. That was the first time I understood the concept of black friday. I personally lean towards the type of marketing Patagonia has put forth with the Worn Wear and urging people to appreciate what they already own. I know it’s not just that simple.
We’ve worked to create a home and build a business, along the way having consumer choices to make I make these decisions with the same excitement I did as a child, when things were not so easy to come by. With consideration, time and the big picture of our lives in mind.
With the arrival of the winter season I am reminded that I love to put time and energy into celebration. I don’t always reach my goal in creating this or that but I am not going to stop and start to focus on the gluttony, the negativity around consumption. I am going to stay grounded in making decent choices everyday, so when time comes to be part of what the masses are up to I can join in the humanity of it, on my own level and know that I am passing on the ability to appreciate, to share joy, to revel in the seasonal rhythms of life to our children and if all goes well to be able to keep doing this much further down the trail.