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Happy December! I proclaimed, evidencing both my December delight and my ingrained enthusiasm for beginnings. 

Each December day is like opening the tiny cardboard panel on my advent calendar to discover some unknown surprise. A card with glittery red cardinals from a longtime friend. The scent of pine upon entering an office. The smoothness of the delicate handle on china cup covered with holly, reserved for use solely during these 31 days. 

It is the month I celebrate my birth, and the world lights up to celebrate with me.  I will ooh and aah over colorful lights strung across porches of humble homes and at the extravagant displays of shining stars throughout the city. I’ll admire every bit of gold, silver, and red in sight. 

I will eat. Birthday cake of course. But also toffee delivered in a cream colored box from Chicago, the tin of cheesy popcorn arriving from Kansas City, the Dutch pastry filled with marzipan found only in Sioux Center. Heartfelt toasts of bubbly will abound. 

I will wear my red winter boots no matter the temperature. Any vintage sweater with a bit of fur trim is game for all days of the week no matter what is on my schedule. Red from my wardrobe has permission to be worn on any Wednesday no matter how ordinary. 

December is also the undeniable reminder that everything will all end soon.  

It’s my last chance to make choices to have this past year the best it can be. It’s a time to take in the reality my hair has grayed notably these past 11 months and that I have far more years behind me than ahead of me. It’s a time to look forward, look backward, and be present. 

I am among the lucky, neither crushed by a global crisis nor engulfed by the heartbreaking loneliness of millions this season. Still, this is the month of losses for me, and many more for those I love. 

It is when one of my sisters lost her spouse of 46 years and another lost her sight forever. Our father died on Christmas Day forty years ago, and our mother’s passing came on a cold December day, too. My friend Joyce and I used to celebrate our Sagittarius birthdates with great gusto. Christmas Eve now marks the day we remember her. 

My heart is full. Of joy. Of sorrow. Of wonder. If I shed some tears amidst the merrymaking, they could be of gratitude or perhaps of grief revisited. Either way, I’ll savor each sweet nibble of a sugar cookie and the warm glow of every candle. I’ll look for the mistletoe. 

Each moment of this month will be the first, the last, and the only. I hope to not miss a minute of it. 

Coach Koenig 

Does this month hold special meaning for you? 

How do you hold both your happiness and your sadness simultaneously? 

What intentions will you hold for the season ahead? 

1 Comment

  1. I love your writings! Thank you!

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