The Heart of the Holidays

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Religious choices aside, there’s a special something that we all seek to feel during the holidays. It’s a feeling beyond words and might be best described by “feeling moments”: moments like walking into our home and watching family members leap across the room with excitement to be with us; moments like walking out of the airport terminal to find family members wearing red sombreros with jingle bells to welcome us home; moments when we walk into grandma’s kitchen and into a full-squish, soft-bodied, heartfelt hug; and moments when someone says and means “thank you” and “I’m proud of you.”

Unconditional Love
It’s moments like these that we feel truly accepted and appreciated as a meaningful part of a supportive family unit, community, or group. It’s moments like these that we know that we’re absolutely loved. It’s this feeling that can make life worthwhile.

Lookin’ for Love
It’s no wonder that for most of us, the holidays harbor hope and heave pregnant anticipation—of what will happen, what we wish will happen and what we fear will happen (based on everything we’ve experienced so far). We are all looking to feel that feeling of unconditional love—even if we’ve never felt it before.

Maybe We’ve Never Felt It
Maybe we never had a child run up to jump into our arms. Maybe our parents never told us they were proud of us. Maybe we don’t even know our parents. Maybe we’ve had experiences with religion that left us feeling like there is no love for us there. Regardless, even if we’ve never felt this feeling of unconditional love during our lifetime, we know it deep down in our genetic soul. How can we know? Because we all seek this feeling in one way or another—through our work, relationships, hobbies, addictions, fun, and even through our isolation. We long for this feeling of being loved and belonging, and continue to look for it until it’s found. And when we’re looking for it over the holidays and don’t find it, we can make the holidays feel horrible.

Where’s the Love?
Some of us may find the feeling of being unconditionally loved when we commune with a deity (God) through prayer, meditation, and life. For others, we might feel unconditional love when we are in nature. And for others, we may feel it when we are with a special person or pet. There are as many ways as there are stars to feel unconditional love.

If we’re “lucky,” we might have a special person, or a few special people, who embody this feeling for us. Whenever we see them, think of them, or are with them, we know that we are absolutely loved. We feel comfortable, relaxed, and full—not the “full feeling in the tummy,” but that satisfied feeling when we know that the relationship is solid. Nothing needs to change or be fixed because nothing is stuck. The love flows splendidly just as it is. And it’s (mostly) very easy.

My Wish for You
It is my wish for you to experience unconditional love in this holiday season, and always.

May you take an extra dose of “Christmas spirit” and hold it close to your heart. May you remember that not everyone in your family may be ready to experience unconditional love. May you accept that although some people may need to hold onto fear a little longer instead, you can be an example. You can lovingly care for yourself, and they may see. May you be generous of heart towards those who may perceive less love than you, those who may be angry or unkind. May you feel the kindness and patience in your own heart, and give yourself and others an uber-heaping scoopful, with sprinkles and glitter on top.

Always with love, Angelique

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