I realize now that what I was really doing was avoiding a feeling of hollow emptiness. I was using the busy-ness of the season and the effort of trying to look perfect to mask what was always within me. Christmas hustle and bustle was the perfect excuse to not deal. Funny (now!) how it took me so many years to realize that the feeling never went away, it just patiently waited for me to be done. When I was too exhausted from accomplishing, it would lay there with me asking what my next excuse was going to be.
If you’ve pieced together any of my story, or if you’re not up on it, I had quite a melt down a few years back that was really all about facing that hollow emptiness. It took a while and it was not fun, but now I am thankful for that melt down. That hollow emptiness has been addressed. How do I know? The evidence shows up quite clearly as peace, calm and connection, especially at this time of year. Yes, there are still deadlines, schedules, plans, recitals—not quite so much shopping! But the frenzy is absent. Also missing is the desperate, ‘not-enough’ feeling; not enough hours in the day, not enough help, not enough money, not generous enough, happy enough or just plain not good enough. And the fear is gone. Fear of missing out, fear of other peoples’ disappointment in or unhappiness with me and the fear of not looking perfect.
Do not be afraid if you too are familiar with the hollow emptiness—if you have concerns, doubts and questions. These feelings are your friends. They have messages for you. Some of what I learned is this: All of our efforts to make this time of year special for our loved ones is precious, even if it goes underappreciated or unrecognized. We need to give ourselves our much deserved love and acknowledgement. Most importantly, you being you, is more than enough.