Most years, the stores are hopping with shoppers from Halloween through the New Year. Music plays, carolers sing and families gather by a nice, warm fire to open gifts and celebrate both the past year of fortune and one to come. 2020 has been different in many respects. Those who brave the grocery stores don masks instead of Santa hats and dip quickly in and out to gather their winter essentials. We have gifts to wrap thanks to Amazon and other online shoppers. Yes, the holidays look a little different. But other gifts—unexpected ones—come in many shapes and sizes.
The Unexpected Gifts of Winter 2020:
- Winter’s snowfall. As a sea of white blankets the landscape, we are reminded of the simple things in life that we take for granted. Freshly fallen snow is the chance to build snowmen and carve snow forts, have a snowball fight and go on a sleigh ride down your driveway. Find your laugh. Play is not just reserved for kids!
- Connections and Re-connections. The holidays are a chance to connect and reconnect. Holiday cards share smiles of faces unseen for months, even years. And the unexpected gift or letter that arrives in the mail often brings a flurry of loving thoughts—laughs with co-workers, wishes shared amongst siblings and memories shared with old friends. The limitations of 2020 have opened many people up to Zoom gatherings and other forms of online connection. Most will likely connect with more people this year than they had in previous years.
- Presence over Presents. Our presence is what matters, more than ever. While families around the globe will be gathering virtually this year, many will likely agree: moments are cherished for far longer than gifts. A meaningful conversation means much more to a grandparent than a pair of slippers. Likewise, children will talk fondly of an experience much longer than they will the hottest toy. Once the initial excitement wears off, what remains? Toys don’t leave lasting memories, people do.
This holiday season, as you are checking your lists, set aside a piece of paper for one more list—everything that makes you unique. What does your presence add to a conversation? Do you have a knack for jokes? Can you cook a delicious meal or create a slideshow with favorite pictures? Are you able to shut off your phone for an entire day to truly, deeply enjoy those around you—whether online or in person?
We all have something to give. And often, in searching within, we realize that our innate gifts are blessings to all those around us.
Happy holidays from all of us at TCM World Foundation!
A Look Ahead
Check out our Calendar of Events! We’re close the year with a virtual New Year’s Eve Meditation and transitioning into 2021 with Women’s Health Classes, the Winter Soup Cleanse and a new session of Morning Qigong. Join us!