A few months ago I shared a story about a “foot grater” that removes dry skin off your heels. In my excitement to try the new device, I over-shredded my feet and pretty much had to tip toe through the ensuing week because my poor tootsies were so raw and painfully sore.
Lesson learned: The key to successfully getting rid of dead skin (without inflicting serious damage) is to take it slow.. very, VERY slow! Gentle exfoliation is the only way.. true for removing dead skin and true for removing Christmas decorations.
I spend the week after Christmas incrementally, methodically taking down our holiday finery. This step by step process, slowly spread over 7 days, prevents the realization that Christmas is over from hitting me like a hailstorm of bricks.
A “gentle” and measured “dismantling” of decorations helps blunt the onset of post holiday doldrums, and also improves the chances that those miles and miles of twinkling lights will be more thoughtfully rolled up and stored.
Letting go of Christmas, once the day has passed, has never been easy for me..but then this past year has been full of letting go.. hasn’t it? I met a young woman a few weeks ago who described the complicated dismantling of her 2020 destination wedding in Mexico. The amazing thing about her is that she let it all go without resentment or anger and moved on with her life- completely. The only thing she’s hanging on to is her wedding dress in the hopes that she will wear at a (post Covid)reception one day.
Letting go of a vision, an event, a relationship or the holidays is always tough, but it’s a healthy process that clears the deck and sets us on the road to fresh opportunities. You can’t grab on to something new without letting go of the old.
As I take down my porch lights today, I’m going to imagine myself slowly unraveling some of the less than productive habits I wrapped myself in to better manage my way through this stressful past year. Like Christmas decorations, they had their moment, they served a purpose, but it’s time for a gentle exfoliation.