As a child, I remember the days of December being the slowest of the entire year. With so much anticipation for Santa and the packages he would bring, I’d go to bed early just to get to the next day faster.
From the perspective of an adult, I now find the days before Christmas chasing one another in a flurry of activity. Going to bed early is not an option. Each hour I can keep my eyes open at night, means one less task for the next day. Occasionally during this holiday rush, I have to shake off the dusting of “Grinchism” and get back to “Whos down in Whoville.”
Most of us have heard of The Grinch. He is a character from the imagination of Dr. Seuss with avocado green fur, yellow eyes and a snarky grin. The Grinch hates Christmas and the entire Christmas season, so he decides to dress up like Santa Claus and steal Christmas from the peace-loving “Whos in Whoville.” He sneaks into town on Christmas Eve and loads up all of their presents, food, wrappings and bows. Then he hauls it all to the top of Mt. Crumpit to dump.
Teetering at the peak of the hill, The Grinch hears a sound that causes him to pause. The “Whos down in Whoville” are awake and singing. They are happy and joyful despite the fact that their presents are missing. They are celebrating without the fixings for their Big Who-Feast. And they are grateful on Christmas Day without any material trappings.
So, I’ve come up with a few gifts we can all consider giving this year. These presents don’t require wrapping. They aren’t on anyone’s Christmas list and you can leave your wallet in your pocket.
– Begin by bringing to mind someone who has “done you wrong.” Someone who has hurt you and the burn of agitation erupts whenever you hear his or her name. For one day, in the spirit of Christmas giving, offer this person the gift of your Forgiveness.
– With your eyes closed and your body relaxed, imagine someone in your life who you tend to judge harshly. Maybe you want to change the way they do things, the way they act, or how they look. This person may even be you, yourself. For one day, grant the gift of Acceptance.
– In a moment of quiet, reflect on an individual you find somewhat annoying. You are frustrated by their nervous chatter or the fact that they walk too slow. Perhaps they always show up late or they tend to be forgetful. Keeping in mind this person could be you, yourself. Just for one day, bestow them with the gift of your Patience.
– During this holiday rush, you will come upon someone who is suffering. It might be an injury or an illness or perhaps a devastating loss they are dealing with. Lend a sympathetic ear or words of comfort as you share the gift of compassion.
– As you enjoy the riches of love and laughter, of sustenance and satisfaction, remember those who live in loneliness and need. Their emptiness may come from feeling unloved or forgotten. They may be struggling to put food on their table. So for just one day, share with someone your gift of generosity.
Each day that we act with forgiveness, acceptance, patience, compassion and generosity we allow peace, joy and love to fill us up, to overflow our boundaries and to touch the life of another.
These gifts are free. They are exactly the right size and they will always be in style. These gifts can be bestowed on others but they can also be granted to ourselves. These gifts are capable of multiplying and their value grows each time they are re-gifted.
As this holiday season and this year come to a close, I wish you peace, joy and an abundance of love.
Laurie Kasperbauer, RYT 200, enjoys the spiritual and physical benefits of yoga practice and instructs both group and private classes. Laurie is also an active Florida realtor specializing in properties in Naples and Marco Island. She can be reached at Harborview Realty, 291 S. Collier Blvd., Marco Island, or by calling 712-210-3853.