Tradition

Congratulations if you are able to read that word and not hear singing. Unfortunately I both see and hear Topol as Tevye. Always.

One of the things that didn’t occur to me until I was a parent was how much our actions around holidays shapes a feeling of tradition for our kids. Growing up I had a feeling of “the way things are, is the way things are” that didn’t shift until I started experiencing holidays outside of my clan.

My father was a big believer in “there is only one right way” which, in retrospect, probably afforded him a feeling of control in a sometimes chaotic world. But it didn’t leave any space for the opinions or disagreement any of his six children. Come to think of it that may have been part of the motivation behind his attitude. Holidays were often…tense.

For many years after my husband and I got together we continued to observe holidays with both families in the manner dictated by their tradition. We were spared the two stop issue many couples face by virtue of his family being Jewish and mine being Catholic. When our daughter came along the holidays became about her. The traditions slowly crept in the way that they do, adopted, adapted and invented.

One way we acknowledge our differing traditions, and our whole-hearted lack of religious observance connected to any holiday, is by celebrating the Winter Solstice each year. The shortest day, the longest night, the Solstice has been used to mark the season since ancient times.

And now its our tradition – the light returns and so we dance!

Since I will be too busy dancing naked in the moonlight to post to my blog tomorrow – Happy Solstice to All!

(Some people still think “pagan holiday” when they hear Solstice so I included the de rigueur Stonehenge at sunset. And no, there won’t really be any naked dancing.)

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