I Wish I Had a River I Could Skate Away On

I’m having a hard time getting in the Christmas spirit this year. Storms a-brewing in the extended family are getting me down. I’m ready to curl up on the couch with a giant box of chocolates and block out the world.

I usually run to put up the tree, put on the Christmas tunes, get out the ribbon and tape. This year I’m dragging my heels. Everything feels heavy and dull. The usual comforts feel stressful and superficial. I don’t even feel at home when I’m at home.

A week or so ago, we were driving the kids to their Saturday morning swim lessons. When we left our house, the day was chilly but clear, and the sun was shining in a blue sky. When we turned onto the pool’s street, the road suddenly disappeared about 500 metres in front of us. There was a dark grey curtain as far as we could see to the right and left, covering the entire horizon from heaven down to road.

I was driving, and I almost couldn’t believe what I was seeing. All around the car was sunshine, but we were rapidly approaching a wall of black that looked almost solid. I couldn’t comprehend what was happening, and it seemed too unreal to stop the car and turn around. So forward we went, into the darkness.

Suddenly we passed through the boundary into the snow squall. All light vanished and the car was surrounded by huge snowflakes, whipping around in strong winds. We could barely see the pool building even though it was less than a block away. We were lost to the storm.

The slighest dusting of snow on the ground causes a lot of excitement around here. The kids can’t wait to get outside and celebrate the coming of winter. There are sleds to pull, angels to make, snowballs to throw. They’re eager to shovel the driveway, even.

I should take my cues from them. There is joy to be found in even the smallest of annoyances. Otherwise, this Christmas will be lost to the storm, too.

8 thoughts on “I Wish I Had a River I Could Skate Away On

  1. MrsCarlSagan

    Family “stuff” can be so stressful and you are really carrying a lot of it right now. I do hope you can find joy in the small things….and you should definitely get a giant box of chocolates just for you anyway. You deserve it.

  2. I just erased my advice-giving comment because you don’t need it. You’re a smart woman. You’ll figure it out, if it’s figure-out-able. I hope the family stuff works itself out and I hope your children give you comfort and joy rather than dismay.

  3. So sorry, Lynn. It’s harder than usual when this kind of stuff hits right at Christmas. It’s hard to get into the festive mood when your heart is heavy with other worries.

  4. Hugs to you. That sucks. I hope the heavy dull feeling goes away soon for you. Have you tried Balieys Irish Cream? Nothing says Christmas spirit like a buzz from Baileys. 🙂

  5. It is no coincidence that many advent calendars are loaded with countdown chocolates. I opt for the full-sized daily chocolate myself. I’m sure we burn it off with all the stress and it does make it all seem better.

    Sorry your season isn’t starting as you’d like. No brilliant words here today. I know it will get better and your kids shining with Christmas wonder will help. …and chocolate.

  6. I hear ya on the stress part this year and I’ve noticed that other people (ie. coworkers, strangers in stores, etc.) seem to be particularly grouchy at the moment.

    What’s been helping me is thinking about all the wonderful drinks and food that I’ll be enjoying. Oh and extra sleep, God willing!;)

  7. Well said. The hurly-burly of life can get you down. We try to do so much because we can. I’m so behind on my shopping and prep this year. But my new favourite saying is, “oh well.”

    Christmas may be a learning moment for my children–one I’ll call “Dealing with disappointment.”

    Thanks for the Oryx and Crake recommendation. It’s going on my reading list over the Christmas holidays.

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