Not the “Traditional” Tradition
Holiday traditions have recently meant a 10+ hour flight somewhere across the world. Growing up in Brazil, we remember having some “traditional” holiday traditions like secret Santa games and lighting a Christmas tree. However, over time our traditions began to fade. As we moved away from our parents’ home, several of our holiday traditions no longer worked for our family. We reinvented our holiday tradition to suit a single need: to be with our family no matter what, where, or how.
It’s often tempting to reminisce on the “good old days” when it was easy to gather everyone around the table for a Christmas Eve dinner. Nowadays it is a lot more complicated to make that happen, especially when our family is in two countries and we have to factor the traditions of our husbands’ families as well. Sometimes it is easy to get caught up in the motions and activities behind the holiday season and forget to value those who make those traditions both important and dear to our hearts.
In a city like DC, where people come from around the country and the world, the holiday season can remind you of a beloved tradition you are missing out on. Whether you are a college student who can’t afford to go home, or your job demands that you work over the holidays, or you are parents of young kids who are too exhausted to plan a fancy dinner, this holiday season can feel like a period of deep loss or inadequacy.
Nevertheless, take heart! We too easily become focused on fitting into the “traditional” holiday mold that we forget to enjoy the season itself. Rather than dwelling on what you are not doing, embrace the uniqueness of the season you are in and find ways to create new traditions with the people that are in your life today. You never know where the traditions you forge this season, however large or small, will lead.
This holiday season our family will gather together to explore India, which we would never have expected to do as a family. Wherever you will be spending the holidays this year, remember to enjoy the holiday season itself, whether it is enjoying a “traditional” tradition or starting a new one!Katia and Kelly are sisters from Brazil who moved to the US for school. They have lived in the Washington, DC area for over 8 years. Both attend CapCity Church and are part of the leadership team at the Kingstowne location. Katia is currently working at an international organization, where she spends most of her days geolocating projects and publishing photos that “give a face” to development projects. Kelly works with web communications at a university in the DC. Together they own a real estate investment company and are planning to start another business in 2014. Both enjoy laughing, sharing a delicious meal, and hanging out with their family, friends, and 2 fluffy dogs.