In a time filled with change, I sometimes find myself wishing that everything would stay exactly the way it is. We write things down, take photos to capture a moment, and memorize the smallest details to make sure that we do not forget the way things are in that split second of time before something else changes. Another way we make sure that we do not forget or lose a memory is to repeat it, over and over.
We call this tradition.
We enjoy something so much, or just happen to do it again and again over time that it becomes natural in our pattern of life. We all have traditions; monthly dinners with friends, yearly holiday activities with the family, anything really can be labeled as a tradition. The definition of a tradition itself is up to you. Everyone’s is different.
My family’s tradition each year has always been Christmas Eve at my house. We’d do the good old Italian “Feast of the Seven Fishes” and spend every December 24th together eating good food and sharing stories about Christmases past and family fun. This has and always will be my favorite family tradition.
But sometimes, traditions change.
It is hard, when something that you have become so accustomed to since you were a child changes, or completely disappears. The one-day a year when we were all in the same place and suddenly that was gone too. We were all getting older. We had different places to go and different people to see. Eventually, something had to change.
And I was sad.
Change is difficult. Like I said, I find myself wishing I could just freeze everything and keep it exactly the way it is. It’d keep my parents young, my siblings here, and my family intact. But time is both our enemy and our friend and Father Time is also the father of change. Passing time brings about transformations all around and, with that, new traditions.
It is ok to feel sadness when a tradition comes to an end. But, almost every time, something will be there to replace it. A new tradition can pop up just as easily as the old ones, giving that holiday or cause even more meaning than you ever thought it could have had before.
Enjoy your traditions this holiday and into the New Year. Keep them alive, and spend time with your families. Make new traditions, whether you’re replacing ones that you’ve left behind or adding onto something you have always known. Christmas traditions are some of the best, full of love and laughter and spirit. Capture the moment, write it down, & do it all over again next year as long as you can.