My heart has been filled with wishes today. They started there…in the center of my chest where hopes and dreams collide, and floated up into my head til I was overflowing inside.
Happy Wishcasting Wednesday! For all you Wish Makers who have followed me over from Jamie Ridler Studio, I welcome you. Pull up a star and make yourself at home. My blog is your blog! For those who are visiting, unaware of what has become one of the most delightful rituals of my week, there is plenty of room on the walls for flowers, flies, and passer-by’s. Welcome all!
Jamie poses the question today….What do you wish to enjoy? The answer has been with me all day. I have obsessed over it…in the most delightful way. It has been my retreat in times of stress and my promise as I think of the weeks and months ahead.
I wish to enjoy the Holidays. Not just have a good time…not just come home with arms wrapped around loads of unwrapped goodies….no. This year, I want to understand first-hand the core meaning of that word….enJOY. Joy comes from Old French. It means to feelings of pleasure and delight.
How many years have I gotten taken down by the societal stresses that accompany the Holidays. There are the expectations balanced with obligations….the needs of self pushing against the influence of the culture. But to enjoy the Holidays…to make a conscious effort to ensue them with pleasure and delight…..that is a craft….and a gift.
Some years ago, I began a tradition that I have been thinking about all day. It is one of my all-time favorite ways to deLIGHT in the Holidays. I was knee deep in grad school, studying counseling. I had made a decision early in school that I would make self-care a priority. So in the midst of mid-terms, I began imagining the relief of the up-coming break. And in my imaginings, I found myself more stressed than renewed by all the obligations. Money was tight and so was time…I already felt like I was at my wits end.
So I decided to set my intention to deLIGHT in the Holidays by have a party just before Thanksgiving. I invited some of my friends, old and new. We took religious candles from the grocery store, stripped them of their icons, and made them our own. Each woman contemplated the feelings they wanted to have illuminate the Season. Some chose a religious focus, some spiritual, others chose relational. I chose personal…self-care.
I called it an Illuminata Ceremony. Each of us deciding what we wished to be the guiding light of our Thanksgiving, our Christmas…Solstice…. Hanukkah…and New Year. Some friends shared afterwards that they lit the candle every day; others reported having carried the candle with them from home to work and out to play. Mine sat on the ledge near my bath where I could see it in the morning as I dressed and light it at night as I retreated from the day.
This weekend will be my Illuminata Ceremony. It has been calling to me as a reminder to choose JOY this year. Tis the Season. And this year my gift to myself will be to indulge in pleasure and delight.