Nothing Else Matters

The holidays juxtapose mirth and depression. A time of joy, giving, humanity versus a time of sadness, alienation, loneliness. From a purely intellectual standpoint, holidays are manufactured to bring family and friends together creating (theoretically) a sense of belonging, connection and contentment.


What contentment looks like.


The reality is less pretty. Less neat. Suicide spikes. Perhaps it’s the expectation of what we believe a holiday should look like that trips us up. A repeat of how it was when we were small. Or how it wasn’t, making it all the more important to be different now. Without these parameters it would look like it did, be what it was on any given year and we (theoretically) would be accepting because we had no hidden agendas (which more often than not are unconscious), therefore no disappointments.

The big question: Why do we need holidays; Thanksgiving (my favorite), Christmas and New Year’s to be grateful, giving and celebratory, goal setting and introspective? What about the other 300 plus days? 


The answer, love.

We can get into negative thinking: life gets us down, a friend hurts us, a loved one dies. As I am feeling melancholy (not sure why) I want to find the balance between authentically feeling my feelings and wallowing in them. They have a place. And they change. My counter sentiment is gratitude for small but substantial blessings: my health, my children’s health, my home, food, heat and friends. One does not negate the other, we are more complicated than that.


I wish you happiness and success. Since these words are lovely but vague, you add the details so they come true. In times of stress and challenge, I wish you peace and clarity. And if possible, through the busyness of the season (and life) I hope you find time to relax into the present moment, because nothing else matters.

About wendykarasin

I am complicated and seeking - joy and sorrow, country and city, competition and cooperation. After behavior of a gregarious nature, I require down time to refuel. My loves are children, family, friends, reading, writing, blogging, fitness, and health. I feel most alive when I stay true to my core values. Beauty makes me happy, pain helps me grow.
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8 Responses to Nothing Else Matters

  1. I’ve been thinking the same things for the past few days; once again, you nailed it. Bravo!

  2. Michael Kojo Carter says:

    According to Calvin of Calvin and Hobbes fame, with tongue firmly in cheek, Christmas offers “….no better way to celebrate a religious holiday than with a month of frenzied consumerism.” Holidays are manufactured and to a large extent artificial designed to benefit profit seekers. But to the degree that they allow us a period of down time after a season of work and output, they are useful and even necessary. However the exact cycle of work and rest can be self-determined and need not depend on a commercial agenda. How we celebrate our off seasons is also in our own hands. You can get together with friends and family anyway and anytime you choose. Give gifts, tangible or otherwise, to anyone anytime. Acknowledge feelings of melancholy as profoundly as you celebrate feelings of joy or bliss, whenever you have them. There really is no one rhythm. Humans are singular, unique, convoluted and complicated. But we are also part of a herd, a community of choice as well as by accident of birth. The challenges include, being able to appreciate our multi-facetedness, our ability to change and to be the architects of that change and our influence on others around us, who in turn affect us. Being human is not easy and if you aim to be as good a human as you can be – whatever that means, it becomes even more complex. It is an ongoing task of learning, making mistakes and relearning.
    Today and all other days be the best you can be….don’t be too hard on yourself, be mindful, do not be too quick to judge, and most of all, enjoy the moments, great and small, blissful or crappy, which go to make up your extraordinary human life.

    • wendykarasin says:

      Thanks for your thoughtful reply. I am in agreement. Sometimes outer (and inner) life sweeps me up and I lose my place – like a storm lifting and dropping me elsewhere. Your comment “don’t be too hard on yourself,” resonates because I expect much of myself and I’m often surprised at the depth of my emotional reactions. Kindness and non judgment begin with self. Please consider following my blog and feel free to share your comments any time!

      • Michael Kojo Carter says:

        Thanks Wendy for not simply reading my comment, but also considering it and responding. It feels odd to be communicating with someone I glimpse only through a fixed image on the screen and their thoughts. Your thoughts are very expressive, naked – revealing a great deal of your deeper environment, your fears and your strengths. You seem unafraid and vulnerable at the same time…and it is shocking sometimes but refreshing too. I sometimes feel unique, which I am…and sometimes alone, which I am always relieved to discover I am not. I too am very hard on myself…feeling I have failed, knowing I have failed to accomplish all that I know I am capable of. But without knowing how much time I have left, I try to make each moment worthwhile and enjoyable. Even if that means sitting in limbo, contemplating the grass growing and listening to my inner chatter. Most times I am satisfied that I have done well and I am happy with my growth and my progress. Be well….have a fabulous year.

  3. wendykarasin says:

    I read and respond to all comments in some way, even if it’s with a smiley face or thank you. Sometimes a comment may be more thought provoking, as was yours, and my response is of a different nature. I mean each and every word sincerely as I’m humbled by my readers, followers and their comments. As far as the fixed image picture goes, know I am much more, usually in jeans! I love your sentence: “You seem unafraid and vulnerable at the same time…” It makes me view myself from another stance. You are a deep thinker, perceptive, and smart. Thanks for finding me and sharing your thoughts!

    • Michael Kojo Carter says:

      Hi Wendy,
      If we keep sharing deep thought provoking comments and thank yous like this, we could be at this until next Christmas. So, thank you for being there to be found in the first place, thank you for your comments and for allowing me to share mine….and you’re right – you are so much more when your image is enlarged. I should also mention that I think you are brave to do what you do and you are obviously not pompous or arrogant, which I am sure is one of the things your readers admire about you. I have been thinking about writing in some form – a blog, article to a webzine or other forum. Reading your work and corresponding with you is encouraging. That might be one of the new things I do in the new year.

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