The sun is shining bright, the barometer is pushing 90, and the air is thick with humidity. It’s Christmas Day; the mistletoe has been hung, tree is decorated, and holiday jingles are piping out of the speakers. Last night was our holiday gift exchange, and tonight will be spent cooking and watching Christmas movies.
In spite of all the effort, it just doesn’t feel like Christmas. The weather isn’t quite right, and the most crucial Christmas element is missing – family. This is the first Christmas I’ve spent abroad, and it just doesn’t feel right. Growing up, everyone always spoke to me about how the holidays are about family. This year it has become really apparent how true that statement is. Sure it would feel more like the holidays if there was a foot of snow on the ground, but without the family (and 24 hours of a Christmas Story) it just feels like any other day.
I’m grateful for my friends this holiday season, because we really have tried to make the most of Christmas. For most of us, this is the first Christmas without our family; I think I speak for all of us when I say nobody wishes for a second Christmas like this. It helps to have friends who have similar traditions, it makes the experience that much better.
I am really looking forward to the holidays next year, being abroad has made realize how valuable my family is to me.