Wednesday, November 20, 2013

The Holidays while in Transition

I wrote previously a bit about kids in transition. We are still in transition and with the holidays approaching it brings new and different feelings, emotions, and challenges.

The dictionary defines transition as "passage from one state, stage, subject or place to another." It sounds so simple and easy. At our training this summer, the illustration that was given for transition was the trapeze artist between swinging bars, that short time letting go of the one bar and grabbing the next swinging bar. That in between time is transition. Most move quickly from one bar to the next. For our family we are still in that in between place called transition.

So we currently live in transition.  We didn't plan to be in transition this long. We packed our boxes in February and thought we would be unpacking in September in the UK but God had other plans. We are waiting. We are still praying that we will be able to move in January.

Turkeys are on sale. Christmas tree stands are popping up in parking lots. Christmas stamps are available at the Post Office. We are living in the mission house, waiting, in transition.

So how do we celebrate the holidays?

Don't mourn what we don't have. I planned to have my Christmas things by the holidays so I didn't keep even little things to make it feel special. I have to guard my mind and not allow myself to mourn the things that we don't have -- the special stockings that my friend found with my son and daughter's name at the LL Bean outlet, the stockings I made, the Jesse tree ornaments, even some of my recipes, Christmas CD's and DVD's, or books. We are far from family. I cannot allow myself to dwell on those things.

Celebrate what we have. We are together as a family. We have a house to stay in and Bob found some Christmas decorations in the house. I also found some cookie cutters. We have friends here.

Look for ways to enjoy the traditions. There are some things that are hard to do because of the transition but looks for ways to enjoy the traditions you have enjoyed. We can drink hot chocolate and drive around and look at the lights. We might be able to find a live nativity to visit. I bought some socks to use as stockings.

Create new ways to celebrate. We have friends here and so we will enjoy our time with them. Someone told me about their tradition, everyone gets their favorite cereal. She even wraps them up because as she said they look great under the tree. That might be a fun tradition to our Christmas morning.

Remember the purpose, reason for the transition. Our family has been called to go overseas. We are waiting for our visa. I need to rest in the fact that this is where God wants us at this time. This is not about me and my family but about God and His plan for the world.

Remember the reason for the holidays. Thanksgiving is the time to remember and think of the things that we are thankful for. This year we are going through the alphabet listing things that we are thankful for. I will share the list later. Christmas is that time of celebrating Christ's coming to earth.

I am writing this because I needed the reminder myself. I also know that I set the tone of our family this holiday season. I might need to go back and read this a few times this holiday season.

What memories do you have of holidays while in transition?

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  1. Where are you moving to in the UK? Love Kirsty x

  2. I know you are going to make the best of this, because that's what mothers do, and Christian mothers even more so because we know true blessing. But I also understand more than you think, for different reasons. I wish Christmas could be happy for everyone, but more than we know, even in America it's cause for depression. I always look for solutions, but it's just very hard. God's comfort is so much sweeter in December!



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