That Holiday Spirit

It’s been a chaotic, wonderful and lovely stack of events lately, which I hit on pretty hard the other day. You can check it out here if you’re so inclined and want to really just jump into the whole “things I think about other things” pool of self-reflection and cogitation. The take away is any big step leads to stress, doubts and its own style of panic.

I’m told this is normal.

But it’s also good to get some perspective, and as it usually happens, I got it in a completely unexpected way. I went to the Christmas service at my wife’s family’s church last night. It’s become something of a tradition over the last few years, insofar as it can be a tradition because I’m there and I go along with whatever anyone mentions.

Children's Museum in Madison WI
Often with great enthusiasm.

The pastor is someone that I get along with pretty well. He ran the marriage counseling my wife and I did before getting married and we usually ended up talking about books and Star Wars until we would remember the whole reason for the meeting and get to the “marriage stuff.”

However, at this service it came to light he was going through some medical difficulties, nothing life-threatening, but definitely things that would challenge anyone. On top of this, his wife broke her ankle and due to both of these events, they ended up having to move into their in-laws house for a short spell. The message was wrapped up in the sermon, and it was a fine message. But it definitely lent some perspective to my own issues.

Add this to the phone call I received from one of my best friends moments before this whole shebang started in which we covered 6 months of events in 25 seconds and made me unintentionally say naughty words in a rather holy place.

Add both of those things to the generally fantastic experience of family, laughter, love, and – of course – driving over the last 4 days makes me realize that everything really is quite wonderful and despite the moments where I’m absolutely convinced that everything is definitely going to blow up in my face, slip past my control, or explode into lots and lots of shiny pieces.

I’m a fortunate man to have the opportunities I do. To have my health and the health of my loved ones. To have fantastic groups of people all over the country who reach out to me just to say “hey.” And to have a profession and passion that happen to be one and the same.

I guess it just took the day of a little rest and a whole lot food to bring it all home in a somewhat meaningful way.

Happy Holidays, everyone.

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