Today is Christmas Eve. There are very few occasions that are considered so significant that the day before is nearly as revered as the holiday itself. On the Eve we prepare ourselves for the big event. With Christmas it might be cooking, shopping, decorating, worshiping or traveling to family or friends. With New Year’s it could be preparing black-eyed peas, purchasing champagne, laying out our most festive clothes, arranging noisemakers or traveling to a ball-drop.
I’ve been thinking of other significant Eves: J’ouvert before Carnival, Halloween before All Saint’s Day, Fat Tuesday before Ash Wednesday, the bachelorette party before a wedding. The ways we prepare for significant events all seem to have one thing in common – the party. In a world that is often painful, we seek relief through friends, family, community, costume, dance, food and libations. We lay our burdens down with sequined dresses and simple sheaths; fully adorned in costume or cloaked in jubilant mud; sipping on champagne or gulping rum punch, all the while feasting like kings and dancing to rhythmic beats. These become the foundations of our culture – what we wear, how we dance, what we eat and drink, and how we express ourselves through art and music.
We’ve all experienced the feelings we have the day before a big event – perhaps a major job interview, first day of work in a new career, family member’s funeral, a big presentation, final exam or your own wedding. For some it could be the precursor to adopting or fostering a child, relocating to another town or country, going off to college or military or even bringing a new pet into your home. When the big event is too uncertain or serious for an advance celebration, we release our joy or grief with the after-party, either in celebration or solemn acknowledgement of the outcome.
The day before is critical. It’s in the Eve that we realize we’ve nearly run out of time. It’s here that we recognize whether or not we’re actually READY. Now’s the time to call off the wedding, buy the last gift or light the fireworks. The Eve is the final opportunity.
This Eve is the culmination of my desire to be home with family, as complicated as that can be. There is bated breath with any Eve – an anticipation of things to come – that is part of its beauty.
In this life every day is pregnant with potential, but the Eves are extra juicy because they hold not only the hope of great joy but also all the wisdom of profound planning and effort.
Wherever you are on this Christmas Eve, take a moment to dedicate yourself to the holiday that you planned. If you don’t like your own creation, today is the last chance to reinvent it, if not for this year, then for 2020.
Merry Christmas Eve!
I wish you all Freedom, Alignment and Effortless Abundance!
P.S. This photo is from my morning walk yesterday in my hometown, Brooklyn, NY.