Now, I’m not saying I’m like the Queen or anything.
Well, maybe I’m a bit like the Queen. I reckon I could do an equally good job of styling out a crown. I mean… Check me out in a Santa hat:
Palace or no, however, I do find Christmas gives me pause to reflect on things – not least because it’s one of the few times of the year I actually stop for a proper break. I love it. I love the food, the music, the iddy biddy twinkly lights… Christmas just nails it for me. It’s got everything.
Especially the food.
This Christmas, though, has seemed really important. It’s crazy how much life has changed in the last year – a year in which I’ve gained more new, amazing relationships than I can possibly count; I’ve moved to London, changed jobs, met my gorgeous agent and started writing a book; and I’ve learned a lot about myself, both good and bad.
And all these things are amazing. I’m incredibly, ridiculously privileged to have all this going on in my life.
Unfortunately, in being kept busy by these things, I’ve fallen face-first into the habit of living life too quickly. And that’s meant the pressure’s been on to have the Most Perfect Disney Christmas of All Time. I’ve been trying to drag Christmas spirit out of myself by any means necessary – whether that’s wandering around Hyde Park with a glass of mulled wine, listening to Christmas music on the tube, or decorating the house I’d be leaving for Christmas… Just to try to bring back that crazy, blissed-out feeling I remember from Christmasses past.
And I know for a fact that’s not just me. I see people freaking out in the run-up to Christmas, stressing about the food, the presents, the decorations and travel arrangements; I hear about the arguments and passive-aggressive awkward family moments; I get the emails about the Boxing Day Sales starting at 6am… In other words, I see the million little things that get in the way of what – it seems to me – is the whole point of Christmas.
It’s about taking the time to appreciate what’s important; to take stock, and savour the things you’ve got; and to love as much as you possibly can.
Turns out, I kinda forgot that this year. But it’s just arrived. I’m sitting here, writing to you guys, while my Mum, Dad and sister are dozing on the sofa, and it’s perfect. This lil’ moment might never happen again, and even if it does, we’ll all be different – because life changes. Fast.
I’m immensely privileged to be in this position, not only at home, but with this blog – where you guys have shared so much kindness, joy and hope over the last 12 months that I could run on Christmas spirit all year round.
So: a serious, full-hearted Merry Christmas to you, team. I’m lucky to know those of you I do; and I hope the next year will give me time to get to know those of you I don’t. I hope today – and every day, for that matter – you get to appreciate and enjoy the important, sweet things that make life great.
Now, if you’ll excuse me… I’m off to pour another glass of fizz.