I am not too old, nor am I too bitter, to resist the charm of these days. It’s hard to remember any other day of the year why these few days at Christmas are so much better than the rest. But then as they come upon us, the power of their warmth and joy overcomes me, pulls me toward it like an undertow.
For a few days, it doesn’t matter that there is less sun and no warmth left in the frozen ground, the decomposing leaves hardened in place. Even if I sit still and do nothing at all, I will eventually be swept away in a tide of Christmas music and bright wrappings and sugary cookies. There is no hope for hopelessness, no chance for sadness to pervade. Any anger I hold onto unravels like a spool of silver ribbon, left to be picked up and tucked away another day, once the festivities are over and done with.
For now I want only the comfort of choirs singing without accompaniment, and my family close by, and the merciless winter unable to touch us, barred by frosted windowpanes as the candles flicker inside.