This time last year, most of us were eager to see the slow roll of 2020 finally find its way out of our lives. Here we are now, also eager to escort 2021 down the final stretch. This means the holidays are here…..again! I think it’s safe to say that we have all experienced some dramatic changes over the past 18 months. For some, it’s been a true grieving process. For everyone, changes in our lives have ushered in the opportunity for new traditions.
If you look up the word tradition, it is defined as a belief, custom or behavior passed down within a group or society, with symbolic meaning or special significance and originating in the past. I love my family’s traditions. They were all special and sentimental. I wanted so badly to recreate and execute them precisely for my children. As much as I desired that, I also had to come to the realization that life changes. People change. Circumstances change. Traditions, as beautiful as they can be and as warm as they can make us feel, can change.
It’s no surprise that many people find this time of year to be the hardest of any other season. They recognize the losses, the failures, the loneliness. The traditions they’ve always dreamed of have changed. As with any other challenge in life, change is an opportunity to create something new. It’s an opportunity to pass something down to the generations that follow us. I’m sure you have heard the story about the grandmother who accidentally texted the wrong person when inviting her grandson to Thanksgiving dinner. If you are familiar, you know that this stranger (a teen at the time) showed up for Thanksgiving and the rest is history, or should I say “tradition”. The young man AND his family have dined around her Thanksgiving table with HER family for 6 years now. Wow! Take note…… tradition doesn’t have to involve “family”, only your version of it. Family is often found in friends, in coworkers, in communities and churches, even in shelters.
Through the lens of adoption, we see traditions evolve all the time, new traditions honoring a growing extended family unit of adoptive families. We see birth parents gather around a Thanksgiving table together honoring each other and the children they have lovingly placed. We see birth parents and adoptive families celebrating life together, honoring each other and the child they each dearly love.
What a beautiful thing new tradition can create for the next generation.
All of us at Destiny Adoption Services and Consulting wish you a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Traditions!