Losing sight of things more important on Christmas
In an attempt to catch up with the season, I bought a set of about 300 Christmas lights at a bookstore in a mall.
Well, that wasn’t the primary reason for the purchase.
I saw the lights before, in fact, way before, and I recalled the medley of carols that went with them.
I believe it was the Christmas of 1995 when I first saw such colorful lights and heard the cheerful melodies.
"Tatay, tatay, magsabit ka na ng Christmas! (Hang Christmas already!)" I recalled telling my grandfather, zealously persuading him to light up the balcony and assemble the petite Christmas tree. And after all the decorations were complete, I would sit in awe night after night, watching intermittent flashes and listening to two-octaves-above-standard-C notes emanating from the tree.
It was the most exciting of episodes in my childhood, as even if for just a few days, the bland 4-corner structure that is the house I lived in would transform into a sparkling spectacle befitting the festivity. It was something I was awed by and longed for as a youngster free from the complete package of responsibilities, expectations, and frustrations 19 years after.
Nowadays, I would wake up and dress "corporate" then sprint toward the office’s service elevator, tap my smart card against a timekeeping device, greet people around cubicles, open the laptop I just put to sleep to see the agenda for the day.
I would do rounds, ask probing questions of those being audited, leaf through documents from varying physical and electronic sources, listen to answers, rants, and isolated insults, consume at least 3 cups of caffeine, absorb truckloads of information before tapping my smart card again against a timekeeping device, going home, and falling asleep.
Times have indeed changed.
Christmas has become overshadowed by unfinished work, unpaid bills, empty pockets, sickness, misunderstanding, loss of motivation, love and purpose.
All these can really cloud the simple, solemn and satisfying happiness that the season brings.
And it really pains me to realize that, in my case, the directionless busy-ness further robs me of an opportunity to reap the joys of the season, benefits that even finished projects and a commensurate paycheck can never bring.
The Christmas music and the lights triggered some introspection. Two weeks ago, buying Christmas lights was the only recourse for me to at least rekindle Christmas moments I enjoyed many years back.
Many years back, Christmas was spent just looking at glittering decorations, waking up hours before sunrise to hear Mass, going house to house at night to sing carols like crazy, and then waiting for the family to gather at the table come Christmas eve.
The happiness that came with these may have faded somewhat as the years passed.
Now, all the kid inside me ever wishes for is time – in fact, more time – to finish work that still abounds, to find ways to pay the bills and buy presents, to enjoy Christmas goodies, and go to Church and hear what remains of the night Masses I once never missed.
I want to catch up and stock up on moments with those I love most, detach myself momentarily from the hustle and bustle of corporate life and just rest and keep still.
More importantly, I want to be able to do what really matters this Christmas: Be able to reflect on what the reason for the season really is.
Merry Christmas, you lost, tired, weary working soul. The spirit of the holidays still be with you, despite all. – Rappler.com
Lynoel Limpin is a Certified Public Accountant, working as an internal auditor at SM Prime Holdings Inc. Off work, he enjoys the bipolar passions of programming and music, and operates on a purpose, a little guidance, and a lot of caffeine.