It's a peculiar time of year. I find myself getting swept up in amidst a throng I am not entirely sure I'm ready for. Most of the world seems preoccupied, inhabited by an alarm, a panic, a countdown.
Christmas is coming. Yes, that's right. There is a week until Christmas Eve. And part of me wants to say, and so what?
This year has brought with it a great gift. Clarity. I can see more clearly what it is that, just for today, matters to me. I know, I think better than I did before, what it is that I stand for. And what it is that I value.
I am reminded this week of the struggles that so many face during the hype-ridden season.
I will, I know, spend a fair amount of time over the coming days discussing with different clients strategies to survive the holidays. For the bright lights and loud music are not a recipe for fun for everyone, and nor is the opportunity to spend extended periods of time 'en famille'.
Christmas, with its emphasis on kinship, can serve as a difficult reminder of what we don't have. When others are celebrating, we might find ourselves reconnecting to a sense of loss, missing loved ones who are not around. We might be living the nightmare of having someone we care about suffering with ill health or in hospital. Families who find themselves living in limbo, when someone has disappeared may feel desperately incomplete, with someone absent from the luncheon table.
Christmas is not, for some people, the season to be jolly. And that's OK too. The key, perhaps, is in an acceptance that Christmas, like any day of the calendar, is 24 hours to be lived through. One day at a time.