Episode 154 Holidays Have Seasons, Too

December 25, 2023

Good morning from Milan, Italy, and Merry Christmas to those of you who celebrate Christmas. It is Christmas Eve here in Milan. The Vigile di Natale is a very important celebration in Italy, one of the most important days of the year. I decided to come to Italy because I got an amazingly loving invitation from my friends, the Manes family. Alas I am at home alone not well and the right thing to do was to cancel, which I did. Anyway, I have embraced my situation and being alone but one of the things I find interesting about it is that before I even came to Italy for the holidays, I was having anticipatory anxiety about feeling lonely. Yes, I have friends and loved ones here, but I have been out of the country for many, many years and this is a time of year , when people are busy, they have plans, they have their family commitments. Once I got here, I pretty much got past that feeling. I am very comfortable where I’m staying and I’ve been enjoying the city and then – bam – I got sick and the concern I was having about feeling lonely and isolated came to be.

Anyway, I don’t think I’m different than most other people. Once I go down the road of feeling a little sorry for myself, I don’t like the way that feels , and I pull myself out of it.  What’s coming up for me today, one of the things I’m reflecting on, is the fact that the holidays also have their seasons in our lives. There are holidays when we feel elated. Maybe something’s going to happen. Our kids are coming home or  we have something particularly special planned. Then there are those holidays when we feel lonely, sometimes lonely even within our own family units. There are times when we have too much travel, or someone coming home for the holidays either can’t make it or has a travel snafu. There are times when we have too much responsibility for an aging parent. I remember when I was with my partner, Dan. For many consecutive years, it was just the two of us and his father. We were the people to take care of him on the holiday because his caregiver was with her family, and we were really tied down. And yes it felt like a burden, quite frankly.

For those of you who may be having a little bit of a tough time like me, all this simply to offer some perspective and. to remind you also to remind myself that the holidays have their seasons. They’re not all merry and bright. There are years that are not so good. If you’re looking at your phone, looking at social media and getting all these messages, remember that you don’t know what holiday season other people are in.

I don’t want to say that misery loves company. I simply want to remind you that we really don’t know what season of the holidays other people are in, and I wanted to offer that perspective today. Soif you sense that one of your friends may be in a tough spot, make the call. And if you’re that person who is perhaps not having a good day, or really dislikes this day, I simply want you to hear me say to you this. You are loved and you are not alone. That’s all for today. Until next time, from my heart to yours.

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dear Listeners,

Friends say I live my life out loud. That’s because I’m a curious, adventurous person and, as an appreciator, I simply love to share what lights me up. Consider this is your invitation into my fun, multi-faceted world.

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