Traditionally Speaking

turkeyGrowing up, my Christmas Eve and Christmas Day were split. A child of divorce at age 6, I had to split my time between families like a bazillion other kids. I always felt torn, never completely whole in one place or the other. Oh, sure, I got double presents, but it never filled that gap of having someone I loved missing so that I could be with someone else I loved.

I got used to that feeling of division as I got older. The tradition of Christmas for me has been Christmas Eve with my Mom and Christmas Day at my Dad’s family–or some variation on that theme.  We’re always rushing through to get ready to go somewhere else to eat more food, drink more wine, open more presents, and be with someone else we love. That’s my norm. It’s not very relaxing and there’s a lot of wrapping paper mess involved.

I’m happy to tell you that this year will be different. Christmas Day at the ranch has been postponed a few days so Christmas Eve and Day will be at my house with no rush to get anywhere. I’m happily exploring “best turkey” notes on the web (in the past, we’ve deep fried, we’ve oven roasted, we’ve bagged, we’ve unbagged) for the world’s best preparation of the fresh turkey I’m picking up tomorrow from a local butcher. I’m cooking the traditional meal and I’m even going with the double-sized gravy cup from the cooking store. Cranberry relish is ready to roll and my notes wait on the counter. Mashed potatoes, gravy, stuffing, green beans, chocolate pie and cherry pie. Martinelli for the kids and non-drinkers. Seasmoke and Cakebread for the others. We’ve unpacked the dishes that haven’t been out since we hosted Thanksgiving in Torrance 7 years ago. It’s nice to see them again.

I can’t be happier settling in and enjoying the smells and tastes of Christmas. Not having to rush the kids through the getting-ready process. Not having to pack up the car with sweet potatoes, presents, wine, and all of us. Just kicking back, playing a game (Clue rematch, anyone?) enjoying each other, spending some hot tub time under the stars, and waiting for Santa.

Wherever you are, and whatever you are doing, enjoy it. These sentient moments are the ones that really matter.

Merry Christmas.

About @jamieweil

Parent, teacher, writer, filmmaker, youth mental health advocate. Passionate about having new conversations surrounding youth mental/brain illness and suicide awareness. Author of YA novel, First Break, released Wednesday, October 10, 2018, World Mental Health Day and Intuition released October 2019. Available on Amazon, Kindle, and available for request through your local bookstore. ( Concurrently producing the groundbreaking docuseries A Crazy Thought, a sharing of hope and help from the voice of a parent and teacher ( Working with award-winning female filmmakers to bring about a new conversation in youth mental health.
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4 Responses to Traditionally Speaking

  1. Professions for PEACE says:

    Bless your heart my friend! Another delightful post. Merry Christmas! And now, while everyone still sleeps, I am off to get cooking again, with love and joy.
    Loving holiday hugs to you Jamie! xo Gina

    • jamieweilhealthcoach says:

      Merry Christmas to you, too, Gina! Love your cooking attitude! I cooked all day yesterday and really enjoyed that, too. (Can’t always say that.) We’re still eating! Much love to you and your family. Enjoy!

  2. Sharkie Zartman says:

    Hi Jamie, I always love your newsletters. They are so inspiring. I hope all is well with you and that you hve a happy new year. I wanted you to know that I have a new short story available on Amazon entitled There’s A Place. It is a wild ride into the unkshown that emphasizes the importance of advanced medical directives.

    Thanks and I hope all is well and Happy New Year! Sharkie

    • jamieweilhealthcoach says:

      Thanks, Sharkie! Look forward to reading it–and getting my will reviewed and signed in 2014! Happy New Year!

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