Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Renewed Effort

           The air is cooler now and the hours of light are shorter. In the mornings, whether I’m walking to my motorcycle or walking away from her, my feet inevitably send up to my ears the crunching sounds of dried leaves and now broken acorns. Autumn is finally here. True, we had a pretty mild summer. Dry and tepid weather were the norm for me. Instead of wearing just my work shirt on my ride to work I now wear a heavy leather jacket, and occasionally gloves.
            Gone are the seemingly endless days of sunshine and my yearn for taking a two wheel lunch has waned. Instead, I take my lunch breaks and sit at my desk and answer emails or voicemails. Nowadays, much like most of the year, my days are filled with preparations for Christmas. Any preparations for any other holiday are put securely on the back-burner of life. No Halloween decorations, no Thanksgiving decorations, no horror movie marathons or even some of my favorite cartoons that seem to be on constant replay on the television.
            A co-worker of mine said the other day “Only when you have lost all feeling towards Christmas will you no longer be a Padwan.” We all laughed. But his words struck a chord in me that made me review my blogs during this season over the past three years. What I read did not disturb me so much as it showed me that I’ve really lost my wonderment of the upcoming holiday season. So much so that I don’t even decorate my house for Christmas anymore.
            As to the reason I don’t decorate, it’s simple, I spend an average of five weeks decorating an entire building, inside and out for Christmas. All the while working a part time job. I’m exhausted when I get home and on my days off, there is usually a list of chores I need to get to, which I ignore for the selfish reason of relaxing and letting my weary body the opportunity to unwind the pent up tension of my seventy plus hours of work.
            I don’t like that.
            I don’t like that I’ve become tarnished by the enormity of Christmas holiday at work that I’ve lost my own wonder for the season. Yes, I still love Halloween. It has always been one of my favorite holidays. What’s not to like, free candy, creepy movies, refreshing brisk air and crunchy leaves under foot? Not to mention all the excitement that comes from celebrating the death of summer and the fact that your loved ones want to spend more time cuddled up in your arms than in the sultry, humid days of summer.
            So, where does this leave me? A man who has not felt any excitement for the joint Pagan and Christian celebration has waned to an almost extinguished ember on the lone prairie of life. Well, my dear reader, it leaves me sitting on my porch smoking a cigar and wondering whether I should make a concerted effort to regain my excitement or should I just get a bucket of water and extinguish that dying ember permanently.
            I vote for the former rather than the later.
            In the past, whether I was sitting alone on my ship while serving in the Navy on Christmas day or surrounded by loved ones eating too much food, opening too many presents and dozing off to whatever football game was on television, I was always grateful for where I was or what I was doing during that season. I want to recapture that misguided, crazy, manic kid of my youth and the wonderment he had of the season of sharing and joy. I believe I will try, extremely hard, this year to not be the sour-pus I’ve been in the past. Instead, I shall try and shrug the chains of disillusionment and be a bit kinder towards my fellow man. I will also make a concerted effort to pay attention to the small wonders that come across my path. Like the joy from a child who is seeing the work me and my co-workers have spent all year working on and the amazed look of the adults who’ve spent an entire lifetime observing the work of my predecessors and the work we’ve done.
            So, if you see me walking down the street with a scowl on my face or if you see one of my tweets or facebook posts that is a bit morose about the season, please, for my sake and the sake of my inner lost child, tell me a positive memory of your holiday season or better yet, just call me out on my Scrooge-like behavior.
            Have a great week.

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