Yesterday, we took Christmas down. I always hate that day. Even if I feel I've soaked in every single bit of goodness from the holiday season, it always feels like the tree is coming down too soon.
Jordan always ribs me about something he calls Kodak Moment Syndrome (KMS for all your medical professionals) - he thinks that I have this condition that forces me to compulsively create "perfect" moments. And I don't disagree - I got that from my mother, the queen of creating perfectly decorated guest rooms or hand-crafted birthday party invitations.
Christmas feeds that KMS in such an intense way. Everything is glittery. Everything is decorated. Soft, warm, glowing lights twinkle in all corners of my house. Even when there's clutter everywhere, or Tom Hanks has shed what seems to be his entire coat (#everysingleday), if the house is decorated for Christmas, it all seems to matter less.
At Christmas, the KMS void is filled. There's no need to fuss over the house being just right because everything is already beautiful and magical. And because of that, during Christmastime, I find myself sitting still a lot more.
And by "still," I mean STILL. Not like, "I'm physically being still but I'm scrolling through Instagram." Mind, body, heart, soul, Christmas tree, glass of wine, STILL.
And boy, does it make it obvious that I don't sit still that often.
We are a generation that plays Netflix in the background of our lives - not to watch, but to just "have it on" while we're cooking a meal or putting on makeup. Constant background noise. Constant companionship through social media. Even if we're physically alone, we're never actually alone. Our friends are just a Snapchat away.
I'm not casting stones - I am the #1 perpetrator of the offense of absently scrolling through Facebook 10 times a day.
But isn't it kind of like avoiding mirrors when you know you aren't in the shape you'd like to be in? Isn't constantly being surrounded by images (via social media) or sound (via Netflix or cable) keeping us from the clarity of the kind of introspection that comes with sitting still?
It can be a little scary, that kind of stillness. You never know what's going to bubble up. I think it's the reason we avoid it.
But as I write this, sitting at my kitchen table, I hear my own voice from within so clearly. The last remaining strands of twinkle lights that are wrapped around my bar cart are starting to glow a little more brightly. The wind outside is whipping up flurries of newly fallen snow. The mountain air is whispering.
Nothing is happening, and so something is happening.
Maybe you aren't like me, and stillness comes easily for you. What a blessing. If you are like me, though, I challenge you to lock yourself in a closet, or sit at your own kitchen table, close the computer, turn off the TV, turn your phone screen-side-down, and look in the proverbial mirror. Introduce yourself to yourself.
It may have been a while since you met.