S+L logo

There’s No Place like Home for the Holidays

December 30, 2008
wateryvancouver.jpg
There's a saying in Italian, "Natale con i tuoi, Pasqua con chi vuoi." It means: "Christmas with your family, Easter with who ever you want"...which is why I am in Vancouver.
Being home after a year away - probably more like four years away, if I count all my experiences abroad, is a surreal experience. Nothing and everything has changed. On the one hand time has passed, parents age, hearing gets impaired, hair gets grey, childhood friends get married (ack!), children grow, people move, and buildings go up where there were no buildings before. On the one hand people expect that you are exactly as you were when you left... but living on one's own, fending for one's self in the big city, working in one's chosen profession, acts like water rushing over the rocks at the bottom of a river. It's still the same rock, but subtly changed, the rough edges are smoothed out, and shape subtly changed. It's challenging to realize that no matter where I've lived and what I've done, once the plane touches the runway at YVR I am still someone's child, someone's niece, someone's little cousin, someone's big cousin, or "that kid who used to...". At the same time though, it's like slipping on a favourite fuzzy sweater. In that fuzzy sweater time stands still... or at least, doesn't matter quite so much, the hassles of everyday life, deadlines, work projects, life worries, are suspended, defenses drop, and rest happens. Reconnecting with old friends gives me the sensation of being in a safe haven, and making new ones at the same time reminds me that one should never allow oneself to stagnate. The unique sensation of time being suspended gives me the sensation that anything is possible -- that magic can happen. And indeed, magic does happen... with time and everyday life suspended I feel like I'm getting a chance to enter into the hush that surrounds Christmas, that speaks more than any Christmas carols or TV specials, or even any homily. Not to mention, it's a good chance to take a more objective look than usual at all the different elements that have come together over the years to make me who I am today... and figure out if any of those need some work.
Being home in Vancouver also reminds me that I'm spoiled, and not just with attention from loving family members. I was born and grew up in a city that is so naturally, spectacularly beautiful, nothing else will ever quite compare. Being home for the holidays reminds me that although you can't go back in time, you can always go home again.
Related posts
5 Years In, Prominent Catholics Debate Over <br> Pope Francis’ Legacy
FacebookTwitter
Emilie Callan provides us with a brief recap, and reflection on the Francis@Five debate, which took place on on Jan. 31, 2018. Link to the video is also included in blog! ...read more
Today and every year on February 22nd, the Catholic Church marks the Feast of the Chair of St. Peter. This feast day brings to mind the mission of teacher and pastor conferred by Christ upon Peter whi ...read more
Church for Dummies: <br> Easter – Milestone of our Path to Sainthood?
FacebookTwitter
Billy Chan gives a personal reflection on the Lenten Season, and the roles praying, fasting, and almsgiving play. He asks us questions about Easter. Is it a Milestone of our Path to Sainthood? ...read more
Pope Francis’ Message for the XXXIII World Youth Day
FacebookTwitter
Read the Message of the Holy Father Pope Francis for the XXXIII World Youth Day, which will be taking place on Palm Sunday, March 25, 2018. ...read more
Good evening and welcome to Perspectives Daily. 2019 World Youth Day in Panama is coming up pretty fast and registration for this event is open and spots are starting to fill up. On today’s sho ...read more