There are certain things in this life that are awfully sentimental to us.
Yesterday, my family went out to our shed and brought over our five Rubbermaid boxes crammed full with Christmas decorations. As we went through all of them, setting them out, we would take moment to ooh and aah at each little treasure. In my family, our levels of sentimentality vary from my sister, at almost none, to my Daddy and myself who hardly get rid of anything. I have recently gotten better, found a happy medium of sorts, and have gone through my junk little by little over the past year.
You see, growing up, I shared the same bedroom with my sister; it was Winnie the Pooh/Peter Rabbit themed. When she moved into her own room, around age 10 or so, I cried… because it was change. Then, when she moved again, down to our basement, around age 12, I cried again. It didn’t even involve me, yet the idea of change anywhere around me was simply frightening. Finally, I decided to change my room theme, and this was the beginning of my reformation. The hardest moment for me was getting rid of my nightlight. I wasn’t even scared of the dark, it was just… I thought my night light had feelings. I do believe this was the root of my issue… I thought everything… EVERYTHING had feelings. Mainly my stuffed animals, of which I had over 100. Anyhow, I finally stepped away from my Winnie the Pooh themed bedroom and my snowman night light and shifted to new, more age-appropriate, room decor. After the deed was done, to my surprise, I had no nightmares about my night light, swirling through an empty void, crying my name, or my old bedspread growing dusty on a shelf with no friends. I ended up being happy with my decision, in fact, because it helped me begin to take baby-steps away from my phobia of change.
Now, as we take out the Christmas decorations that we use every year, I am continually reminded of all the little traditions we have with each item. My sister and I each have our own nativity scenes that we set up each year, we have a special, specific place for each little decoration, and we even have special music and that we have to play while we set up. Then, when Christmas Eve gets here, we have very specific traditions from then leading up to Christmas Day. On Christmas Eve, we go over to a friend’s house and exchange presents, then, when we return home, we are allowed to open one present, then we head off to bed. When we wake up, Mommy makes a cranberry coffee cake and we open stockings while it’s in the oven, then we’re allowed to open one other present. After the coffee cake is ready, we put a candle in it and sing happy birthday to Jesus (a special song that we learned on “The Donut Man” ♪Happy birthday, Jesus, happy birthday to the Lord, happy birthday, happy birthday, happy birthday to the Lord!♫) and eat food. Then, finally, we open all of our presents. My sister and I start of by opening a present for both of us, then the festivities continue all morning, as we each open one present at a time going from me, to my sister, then Mommy, then Daddy, then back around again. It’s quite a system (:
As you can see, it’s easy to get caught up in a void of trying to get rid of things, but not being able to let go of the sentimental value of them. This leads to going through life, thinking, “Oh… I think I’ll hold onto that…” And then you end up on “Hoarders” in your old age. An easy verse to remember that relates to this perfectly is Matthew 6:19-20, “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves do not break in or steal.”
Why should we put any value at all in things that will be of no value at all when we are gone from this world? So, like I said, I have learned how to detach myself a little bit from my little traditions. However, just recently, I’ve started learning that it’s important not to detach too much. I am growing up, but I need to be sure that I’m not forcing it along, or that I’m not getting rid of junk just because I want to seem “more mature” being sentimental can be a mature thing to do as well. Therefore, as I head into Christmastime, trying again to find a happy medium, I am enjoying our traditions for all they’re worth. Because there are some traditions I might never let go of.
What are some of your traditions… Christmas or otherwise?
Still sentimental………………………… Gracie (: