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Finding Joy...

Goodwill. Rushing. Cheer. Anticipation. Joy. These are the words that come to my mind during this week leading up to Christmas.

Goodwill, because, hey – it’s the season, right? I feel I have an ethical and moral responsibility to give more, be kinder, and exercise more patience as the holiday rush gains momentum. And speaking of rushing, I try to have empathy for those who have by choice, or necessity, had to wait until the final hours to purchase gifts for loved ones or prepare for their holiday gatherings. I am happy to step out of the path of these folks so they can accomplish the things they need to do.

Cheer. Sometimes I struggle with that when I let my thoughts turn to the many wrongs that need to be righted in the world, but I try to power through, being mindful that a smile or greeting from me, or any stranger, could mean the world to someone struggling with their own burdens.

And my favorite – anticipation. Oh, the possibilities! These anticipations run the gamut in my mind. What fabulous snowman outfit will my bestie be wearing to Christmas dinner? Will my grandson be excited about his gifts? Is the Gumbo going to be delicious? Will I actually manage to surprise my husband this year?

And let’s not forget joy. If you open your eyes and hearts, you’ll find that joy dances in the air this time of year. And the beauty of joy is that it comes in many forms. You can find joy in a child’s laughter. There is joy in gathering with loved ones. A warm hug can give joy. The first bite of a warm cookie. You can experience joy by giving to others. You see what I mean? Joy is everywhere if we take the time to stop and embrace it.

Just for a while, let’s put aside grievances and different points of view. Let’s join together to help those who are hurting. Let’s each of us find someone to hug. Find your joy and share it with the world.

Wishing you all a Merry Christmas and a joyous holiday season!

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