“No one ever loses their Christmas spirit…they just misplace it.” – Santa

I had a rather impromptu conversation with Santa at an event at my daughter’s school earlier this week. The topic? Christmas spirit. It seems like many people find the holidays to be less than joyful, more “no, no, no” than “ho, ho, ho”, and I wanted to get his take on the matter.

The loss of Christmas spirit goes beyond just having far too many things to do to get ready for the holidays. It’s much deeper for some, sometimes quite painful, the memories of what used to be, the reminders of what never was, the people who’ve gone and the emptiness now left behind. Sometimes witnessing the joy others experience during the holidays provides us with the contrast which only intensifies the emptiness and the lack of joy we feel is missing from our own lives.

I’ve been examining my own Christmas spirit of late and I see I, too, have let the joyous light of the spirit of the season grow dim within me. Not intentionally, but the light isn’t shining as brightly as it once did. I do remember when Christmas was a time of awe and wonder, of magical possibilities, of I’m-so-excited-I-can’t-even-sleep kind of excited, of joyous expectations!

And then we get older and life can suck the joy out of so much more than just Christmas.

I’ve been intrigued and encouraged by Santa’s words from earlier in the week, about how Christmas spirit is never lost but rather has simply been misplaced. If it has been misplaced, we know it remains within us, awaiting for us to rediscover it.

Could it be that simple?

My brief talk with Santa may have been specifically about Christmas spirit, but what he was really talking about was the spirit with which we decide to live our lives. Christmas spirit is a microcosm of the energy and expectations we choose to bring to our lives. If we choose to look at life through eyes of awe and wonder, our Christmas will also be filled with awe and wonder. And if we choose to focus on what we feel is missing in our lives our Christmas shall be filled with even more of the same.

The world of awe and wonder I knew as a kid still exists. I’ve just been too busy becoming a jaded adult to notice. And, let’s face it, at my age who really believes in Santa anyway? Maybe it’s not about believing in the down-the-chimney version of Santa from our childhood. Maybe for us adults it’s about believing in what he represents…the awe and wonder, the infinite possibilities, the magical expectations, to simply be excited about being alive…just like we were when we were kids.

Perhaps that’s why he shows up every December, just before we begin a brand new year, to remind us the gift of life – our life – and the abundant blessings in the world around us are worthy of celebration every day of the year!

A great way to start a new year. A great way to live a life, too.

Maybe it’s time to see what Santa sees.

It’s a great day to be you!

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