Christmas is certainly a wonderful time of the year, some may say it’s the exciting gift exchange, some may even say it’s the abundance of food that may all give us an extra 5 pounds this holiday season, but when it comes to Christmas, what comes to mind is simply, the memories.
Those Christmas memories are so vivid I fee like I can relive them. I get a great sense of nostalgia when I think back to my childhood christmas’. We call this nostalgic moment “Saudade” and just like the wonderful memories I have of Christmas, I cannot quite put into words the meaning of “Saudade.”
I can close my eyes and still remember so clearly getting ready for Christmas. We had such a huge family. Everyone was just that, FAMILY. It didn’t matter if you were 1st, 2nd, or 3rd generation we were all simply a big happy family. Christmas Eve was always spent at my great grandmother’s house. Her name was Maria, she was a petite, chubby free spirit that we all loved. Her house was big and to this day I can remember the detail of the home including its spacious pink bathroom even its tiling and bathtub.
When it came to food, there definitely wasn’t a shortage. We had lots of food, all kinds of food. My favorite was always the roasted pig, even though I don’t eat pig anymore but the memory of Christmas dinner will always include a thankful tummy.
Christmas Eve was all about the time spent together. We didn’t focus on the presents and the materialistic side of the holiday we focused on the fact that the many kids in the family could play hide and seek for hours or play outside while the adults could chat until they discussed anything and everything they could think of.
When I think back to these times I can still picture everything, taste all the same foods and smell those scents, that’s how powerful and beautiful my Christmas memories were. While my great grandmother passed awhile ago, I still try and create those experiences for my children. I want them to live it, experience it and have those same special memories that I did.
I want them to understand that this isn’t the best time of the year because of gifts, but rather because of family. I want these memories to last them forever. The family, the memories, the love, now THAT is the true meaning of Christmas.