Merry Christmas!

So I don’t celebrate Christmas, but I do celebrate family, joy, and massive discounts. Despite my lack of belief in the institution, religious or otherwise, I can’t help but get caught up in the general cheeriness of the holiday season. Growing up in America, you’re conditioned to conform but in this instance, I’m happy to do it!

Here’s a short list of my non-Christmas Christmas traditions:

  1. I have a list of favorite Christmas songs and know the words to most all (even the ones I hate).  I love Wham’s “Last Christmas” and Mariah Carey’s “All I Want for Christmas” but I hate the Beach Boys’ classic and Elvis’s “Blue Christmas.”
  2. I put up strings of icicle lights outside the house just so we weren’t the only ones on the street without decorations.
  3. We have a family dinner or plan an activity, just because we all conveniently have the same time off.
  4. We scout the newspapers, flyers and websites for post-Christmas sales together.
  5. Shopping, lots of shopping…

This Christmas, I hope you have a lovely day filled with laughter and delicious food. May the greedy, capitalistic part of you be assuaged for a while and may your holiday haul be spectacular.

Merry Christmas!

Mourning

BBC News – Pakistan mourns after Taliban Peshawar school massacre.

The world is mourning the loss of innocent lives. Every headline, story, post or mention of the children, teachers and families brings tears to my eyes. Tears for the suffering of the mothers and fathers, the siblings and friends, that expected bright faces at the dinner table after a day at school. I saw tears in my mother’s eyes who held me and said a prayer of thanks to God for protecting me from such a terrible fate.

How privileged I am to have never felt unsafe in school or college. Even when Boston was shutdown and the suspect caught not 10 minutes from my dorm room, on a street I regularly traveled, I felt safe. There were security measures in place! If something had even happened, I continued to believe in justice and what it means to live in America.

This tragic and painful event, a hate crime so heinous, turns me to my faith. I pray for the remedy of the wounded, the suffering of loved ones be eased, and that the doors of heaven be opened for the fallen.

Surely we belong to God and to Him shall we return.