Sunday, December 04, 2011

Asleep in the ... HEY!

In Christmas nativity scenes, you see Mary, Joseph, some shepherds, three wise men and a variety of animals.  Last, but never least, is a sleeping baby Jesus.  Christmas, it seems, is a season of sleep and rest.  Even many Christmas Carols follow a similar theme:  Sleep in heavenly peace ... asleep in the hay ... Dormi Jesu ... O little town of Bethlehem, how still we see thee lie.  Why is it then, in this season of calm, quiet holiday slumbering, we are at our busiest?

During these precious few days between Thanksgiving and Christmas, everybody is bustling, which is the polite, somewhat antiquated word meaning RUNNING AROUND LIKE CRAZY PEOPLE TRYING TO FIND A PLACE TO PARK AND THEN ATTACKING YOUR FELLOW HOLIDAY SHOPPER WITH PEPPER SPRAY.  Bustling.  I lasted exactly 30 minutes in a mall yesterday before I had to leave or go insane.  I followed that with a trip to a bookstore, which is always my go-to activity when I'm overwhelmed.  Spending time in a bookstore is like being with my people.  That idea was short-lived as well, as my people were overrun by other people, and suddenly my haven of literature was overrun by a bin of angry birds, holiday mugs, Twilight figurines, and an entire 3-part wall of 2012 calendars.  Defeated, I slunk back to the car, which was parked a light-year away at a pizza joint.

The next seven days are so busy, our household has to map out a plan of attack every night to be sure everybody is where they need to be when they need to be there, and has the appropriate clothing, music, homework, costume, electronics, instrument, etc.  Usual household activities like doing the laundry, dishes, etc. are either postponed until they reach a reading of critical, or are abandoned all together.

I like the idea of a peaceful Christmas -- heck, I like the idea of a peaceful anything -- but I wonder if I'm just not cut out for it.  Generally speaking, I like to be busy, and I definitely prefer it to being bored.  What I wish for isn't so much rest, as a reasonable amount of time to do everything I would like to do.  I even wonder about the phrase Rest in Peace.  For many people who have spent a lifetime being doers, would rest in peace be appreciated or even wanted?

My goal for the Christmas season, and life for that matter, is to be peaceful and calm whenever possible within the parameters of my life.  But I'm mindful that baby Jee, like most people, didn't spend his life sleeping. He woke up, he made some noise, and he filled his life with activity.  And as for that sleeping in the hay stuff?  Best to leave that to nativity scenes.  I have things to do.

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