Ekodo: A Perfect Christmas
My childhood recollections of Christmas were of enchantment. In adulthood Christmas has become synonymous with angst.
As either the youngest sibling needing to suffer the reminders of never being permitted to have a legitimate opinion of my own. Or worrying about spending Christmas in non-ideal circumstances because everyone else in the universe has a well functioning extended family, that comes together annually to reassert familial perfection through a ritualised cacophony of ramshackle laughter and conversational banter, amid overeating and doing the dishes whilst catching up with siblings, aunties, and cousins.
So many of us have a life that does not fit the mould of the ‘normal’ family and no other time of year is so capable of inviting self-judgement and disappointment to take up residence.
My own self-judgement was usually fuelled by constantly noticing that my own situation does not match the way things were supposed to be in the mythologies of family happiness.
But the mythologies rarely match our realities and so our expectations can sometimes get firmly in the way of witnessing the perfection of what our lives actually are: perfection expressing itself as the constant not-quite-rightness of our existence.
A weight lifts off because suddenly there is no gap between what is and what ought to be. As they become one, expectations that drive disappointment dissolve and we are left with a sense of ease.
Where is that mythology in our pantheon? Well – perhaps it is up to us to make it so, and then our reality can be celebrated each year (and each moment) for exactly what it is, right here, right now.
This is a gift we can give to ourselves and it is beautifully wrapped in our own body.
Sean Weaver is the founder and host of Ekodo – a professional development life-skills programme for compassionate agents of change. He lives in Wellington. See the Ekodo Facebook group here: http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=47683391767
Sean is also a climate change solutions consultant through his business Carbon Partnership, where he focuses primarily on protecting forests.