Conscious Celebrating

Each of us sees with a slightly different perspective. We have our own unique lens of the world. I’ve walked through my life with a mindset that is slightly different than the mainstream. My inner voice, at times was very strong, directing me in certain ways that were against the grain. I was the first in my family to go to college. I went to a healing arts school after I earned a university degree. I turned away from going back to work full time after my first son was born.

I have had a minimalistic approach to traditional holidays for many years. To be honest, I would be considered lower middle class and outrageous gift buying was not possible. I found the cycle of expected gift giving exhausting. I heard the complaints about expected gift buying, holiday stress, and how being around family gatherings required large amounts of alcohol. Honestly, a lot of what I saw were the extra hours that I would have to work to pay for the experiences that I wasn’t personally getting that much out of.

There were several years of the mainstream Christmas charade that I enjoyed when my children were small. The matching sweaters to see Santa. The lights and decorations around town, the adorable holiday art made at school, the joy in watching the paper ripped from the boxes, the brightly colored toys and the excitement of my boys playing with their new gifts.

Today my life is much different. I had a major spiritual awakening in 2019. It was a similar experience to those who have had a near death experience. My world view was opened and I was set on a higher spiritual path. My old life fell apart so that a new life could take its place.

Today, on Christmas day in our house, there was minimal negativity. We slept in, we moved slow. We had no obligations to honor except what works for our immediate family. We recently moved out of suburbia to a place that better suits our new lifestyle. There were no gifts because we have put experiences at the top of our priority list. We didn’t wear new, fancy, uncomfortable outfits to impress others. We will be taking a short trip and will buy a few needed items in the place of what we used to consider our regular festivities. We played Christmas music in the car. My son and I found a new trail. I asked nature to help me not be so angry and frustrated.  I found a spot with an amazing view and let my honest emotions flow as I cried. It was so much healthier than pretending I’m happy because that’s “what you are supposed to do and feel” on this day of the year. We drove in the sunshine and I enjoyed the incredible, natural landscape.

The mainstream idea of this holiday and the constant suggestions to over consume gifts, alcohol and other peoples wishes are banished from our lives. I’ve become more attuned to myself and mother nature. I had the time and space to journal. I ate healthy food that I won’t have to work off in the gym later.  I am more conscious of who is profiting from all of the consumption and how it is a vicious cycle that isn’t benefitting my family. We are creating new traditions and rituals. I am giving new meaning to Merry Christmas.


Melissa Lewis

The Angel Wears Prana