Tonight is Mom’s annual Christmas party. In the early evening, Husband and I will bring our little girls (dressed in matching plaid skirts and red tights!) to my childhood home for the festivities. Like every year, there will be clusters of friends and family, a big tree with rainbow lights and vintage ornaments, and a surplus of yummy food and drink. Like every year, we will scatter hellos and hugs. We will celebrate many things: a sparkly season, another good year, a fabulous family.
There is only one year I can remember when Mom and Dad didn’t host this party. And it was all my fault. That year – 2004 – was the year of our wedding. And Husband and I chose Saturday, December 18th for our big day. Ergo, no Christmas party. But that was fine because our wedding was a party of epic proportions. We draped tables in glittery swaths and hung decorations from bare white branches. We danced with our nearest and dearest under the Museum’s big blue whale. The trombone player? Well, he was high on something. And when guests left for the night, they did so with a tiny gingerbread house replica of my childhood brownstone.
The very home we will alight tonight with our little girls. And so. I guess you could say I am feeling nostalgic, and thoughtful. About magical moments six long and short years ago. About parties in my past under gargantuan sea creatures and under my parents’ roof. About the laughter and cheer and memories that commingle in my wake. About life and loss and celebration and soul.
Six years ago tonight, Husband and I welcomed our closest friends and family to the Boat House for our rehearsal dinner. I wore an outrageous and lovely pre-recession blue velvet Gucci suit. We smiled so much that night. On the eve of our I dos, on the precipice of our most wondrous plunge.
And tonight? We will celebrate again. This time with the little girls who add the utmost glow to our green. This time with a hovering awareness of time that has trickled by, the people who have come and gone, and all the good parties to come.
And tomorrow. Like every morning, Husband and I will wake up next to each other. Six years beyond our fabled start. Before gathering our girls, we will linger. And realize. How much has happened – exquisite, wrenching, magical, mundane – between Then and Now. I will take his hand and place it on my belly, an invitation to imagine what’s to come. And then we will do it. We will scoop up our pajama-clad girls and begin another good day.
And next week? And the week after? I will not be here. I will be with my man and my girls. I will put my feet up and enjoy the season with my sweet ones. I will do something I am not very good at doing, something that is so vital to do from time to time, something my body and mind are telling me to do.
I will pause.
Happy anniversary, Husband! Happy Holidays, all! See you in 2011!
Do you plan to take a breather over the holidays? Do you have a hard time pausing the program that is life? Do you believe in the importance of living and loving and partying and pausing?
**I will not be posting over the next while, but I will be reading, so leave me a comment and send me to your blog or another blog you love. I look forward to stumbling into new cyberspaces this season, so if you are a new to this blogging game, make sure to let me (and all of us) know!**