What Do the Holidays Really Mean?
We know you’ll agree with us if we say the last part of every year is one of your favourites. December is like the Friday of the year when everything and everyone is just in this fun, festive holiday vibe.
Some of the reasons probably include the abundance of no-work and no-class days, the beauty of the houses adorned with Christmas decors, Simbang Gabi, great food, reunion with relatives and friends, and of course, the chance to have a fresh, new start.
The Philippines is one of the countries who celebrate the Christmas holidays the longest so it comes as no surprise that Filipinos go crazy when this season knocks every September. That’s how much of a Christmas lover the Filipinos are; as early as September, hearing Christmas songs on the radio and seeing twinkling lights on the houses are already a given.
As a predominantly Catholic nation, this time of the year gives us the opportunity to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ. I’d like to think, however, that there is more to the holidays than celebrating this.
With the numerous number of days when we aren’t required to go to work or to class, the holidays could mean a time for other activities that would enrich not only the spiritual aspect of our life, but also the social part of it where we bond with our families and friends. The holidays could mean time to appreciate the significant roles the people around us play.
Beauty surrounds us every day, but there’s something special on this time of the year when lanterns and Christmas lights could be seen in every house. These decorations are physical representation of what the holidays could mean: making something special out of something ordinary. With effort, the holidays could mean making the ordinary days a little bit special.
Every 16th of December up until the 24th, Filipinos have this quite endearing tradition of celebrating mass before the sun rises where in if manage to complete the nine mornings, we’ll be granted a wish. This tradition in itself feels like a desire to hope. The holidays could mean the chance to feel that flame of hope again for something. Whatever that something is will depend entirely on us.
Who could forget the delectable food served every Noche Buena? Not us. But, more than the delight of eating great food, what really makes us happy is the chance to eat together with the family. The holidays could mean the chance to be with that sister who just got home, from abroad, for the holidays, the opportunity to tease Mom and Dad’s sweetness over dinner, and a chance to show the family that they are one of the most important parts of our lives.
After Christmas comes the New Year and we love the New Year for paving the way, for giving us the opportunity to be a better version of ourselves. The new year allows us to make resolutions that we hope to follow for the next 365 days (or more). The holidays, therefore, could mean forgiving ourselves for the miscalculation of the past year, could mean welcoming new chances to live and love life.
Of all the possible things that could define holidays, I’d like to think that love and compassion are the two intangible things that encompasses our favorite time of the year. Upsize the holiday experience and find your own wonderful meaning for celebrating this season.