Why I Seriously Need Advent This Year

Categories Caring, Doing, Learning, Living, Praying, Remembering, Resting, Thinking

I hate people.

No, seriously. I do.

OK, maybe I don’t hate people so much as I really hate how much negative crap people manage to spew into the world. Maybe I’m just over reading about all the bad shit people do to one another. It is really hard to have Christmas spirit and feel peace and joy and love when the headlines are about nothing of the kind.

For example, have you seen this one? There have been something like – what? – 352 shooting incidents in the U.S. this year that qualify as “mass shootings.” What is wrong with us? We are a country behaving badly and this is just one example of how. Just once I’d really like to see a headline about something positive, something life-promoting be as big a draw as the death and destruction. I don’t know how I can change that, though.

Today's Shooting

Maybe I’m a little bit sad because this Christmas season has brought with it a tremendous wave of memories and an overwhelming feeling of nostalgia. Every time I hear certain songs, or tell certain stories, am taken back to the time when those memories were the present. I miss those times, those people… I can’t relive the past, of course (and I really don’t want to), but I want all of that to be part of my present.

Maybe I’m frustrated. I’m building a new career and a new life for and with my family. It’s hard. I think maybe I’m tired of waiting for something really amazing to happen to alleviate some of the stress I’ve been feeling. Some of it’s good stress; some not so much. But I do know I have too much of it right now and I am not doing the things I know will help alleviate it. I am not eating right, sleeping well, or relaxing enough. I am not showing myself compassion. I need to stop and remember that all worthwhile things take time, patience, and effort.

Maybe I can’t think about Christmas because I am just not ready for it – for all of these reasons and probably a few more. I feel like I don’t have time to think about it and when I do think about it, I have no idea what I want it to be like or how to make that idea happen. Maybe I just need to stop trying to figure it out and just let it unfold. I can’t control the universe. And I need to stop worrying about “shoulds” and whether anything we do or don’t do with our holiday time is the right thing. Whatever we choose will be good.

The stuff of life is a little overwhelming right now.


I am not prepared.

In any sense of the word.

And so I guess what I need is some time to do just that. Prepare. I need to remember that my goal in life is to live deliberately, with passion and purpose, and to know at the end of the day that I have lived, not simply gone through the motions and existed for a few more hours. I don’t want to get to Christmas and have to say “Oh, hey, Lord, I’d really love for you to be born into my heart again this year but I’m such a freaking disaster right now…catch me later?”

I want to be ready. I want to be at peace.

And so I think I’ll start that right now. Tonight. I have work to finish – and it will get done. It has to get done. But for now, I am going to turn off, shut down, and just be. I am going to drink some tea, say my prayers, put on my (other) pajamas and go to sleep. It will all still be here in the morning, but I’m going to start tomorrow a bit more rested and ready to face it all a little more mindfully and maybe a little more peacefully.



Lisa A. Listwa is a self-employed writer with experience in education, publishing, and the martial arts. Believing there was more to life than punching someone else’s time clock and inspired by the words of Henry David Thoreau, she traded her life as a high school educator for a life as a writer and hasn’t looked back. She is mother to one glorious handful of a daughter, wife to the nicest guy on the planet, and reluctant but devoted owner of three Rotten Cats. You can find her adventures and thoughts on living life deliberately here on the blog.

8 thoughts on “Why I Seriously Need Advent This Year

    1. I know, I’m sure you’re in a challenging spot this time around.
      I’m muddling pretty well. I definitely cry at all the songs. 😀 But today Zilla and I had to go purchase small candies for her to take to school for a gingerbread house project and it was a fun trip. Again, she amazes me – rather than doing the literal “kid in a candy store” thing, her selections were modest and very practical. Afterwards, we saw a huge flock of black birds flying around in the parking lot in a group – it was amazing. It was like a dance. I wish I had it on video but it was just about too dark to really film it well and I just wanted to enjoy the experience with her without whipping out a camera. It was fascinating. Right after, as we drove home into the direction of the setting sun, we got to watch the sun set with the most amazing shades of pink reflected in the clouds. A beautiful afternoon.

  1. From your Facebook updates all seems to be going relatively well, but I know and notice a lot of people finding it hard to get into the holiday spirit lately.
    I have been sad and frustrated lately, wanting to yell and shout my displeasure with some of what’s happening, in the news, but I also find it hard to speak up because I worry too much about offending people.
    I am mostly frustrated with things going on in the US, but as a Canadian I don’t know if I should go so far as to write about it on my blog.
    I don’t like to feel like I am attacking a country because I know no country, not Canada either, is perfect. I know the actions of a few don’t speak for everyone. I know lovely Americans like you and others. I just feel helpless and I look to other writers and bloggers and the innocence of the children in my life, when I want to find my own Christmas peace.
    I love to read this blog and to hear about your life. Your writing is brilliant and compassionate. We could all use a lot more of that last one.

    1. Kerry, your blog is your space and you write about whatever it is your heart needs to say. Period.
      Things ARE going well – and it’s not that I don’t have any Christmas spirit, it’s just that it’s kind of buried a bit under all the other stuff and I want to bring it back into focus. Sometimes when things are going well, they are also kind of hectic – I’m working to find the balance again.
      I love you for saying my writing is brilliant and compassionate. *giggling* That made my day. And yes, we all do need more compassion which is why I love 1000Speak so very much.

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