Usually I’m ready for holidays. I know we’ll be busier, and around people more. (Which, as an introvert, its helps to prepare ahead for mentally.) I realize that my kids will need to adjust to being in a new place and schedule.
What I wasn’t ready for?
Pulling out of the driveway in tears on our way to our second Thanksgiving meal.
In all the bustle, I forgot something important – that it’s the last holiday as things are with my family. My brother’s wedding is in January – a joyful event, of course, but it means change. And then after that, my parents will be moving to a new state.
Honestly, I wasn’t feeling emotional about these two circumstances. They’re good things, right? And I didn’t feel like I had any attachment to my parents’ house.
But the more I thought about it, it dawned on me that this was the house I’d called home for years. It was the house I came home to after summer camps, during college breaks, for holidays. It was the house where I celebrated my high school graduation and had my bridal shower.
Oh gosh. I feel stuff.
When It Matters More Than You Thought
Don’t be sad for me. I’m better now. I still don’t feel like any of those things are bad, or that I have a strong attachment to the way things are.
But man – can anyone relate? Feelings are powerful and can surely catch me off-guard. So many times I think I’m tougher than I am, or think things don’t matter, or don’t even take enough time to think about if things matter.
Honestly, I don’t have one. All I could do was cry, get myself together, go to Thanksgiving, and cry some more on the way home. (Maybe some distraction in the form of shopping too.)
But here’s something that helps too: it’s normal. Feelings are normal. Sentimentality is normal. It doesn’t mean you’re falling short and should have it more together. It means you’re human, and things affect you. And that’s okay.
I also like to remember that our God, the one whose image we’re made in, feels things strongly. He weeps, hurts, grieves. He also experiences joy and I’m convinced he has a sense of humor, too. Us feeling emotional? It makes us like him.
Anyway, it’s not much, but that’s what I got. I like to think I’ve come a long way in dealing with my emotions.
What do you do when your feelings catch you off guard?