Christmas is in the air! – A timely, broad-minded, moving post by Preeti S Manaktala

I went to a #Convent school in #Delhi. My #school had a big #Catholic Church within the campus. As I recollect, everything about my school was welcoming & modern. The school assembly was an everyday affair as we dragged through our daily rituals of the morning prayers like ‘Our Father in Heaven’ and other sing along hymns and rhymes. The assembly invariably ended with a ‘thought for the day’ by our beloved Reverend Sisters (Nuns, Sisters)

I remember, one of my favourite subjects in school was Moral Science. Firstly, because there was not much of written CW or HW given. Secondly, because it spoke about the good positive virtues you ought to have in your life and lastly, because it was taught by one of my favourite sisters, sister Maria. She taught us to imbibe only good and taught us how we can grow up to be: Kind, Caring, Humble, Giving, Forgiving .. and to all these adjectives that I stumbled upon in this class, I vowed to myself that they will be a part of me as I grow up. I wanted to possess all these virtues and become a Good-Nun one day! Yes, I will become a nun when I grow up. I was so much in awe of my Nuns and their charisma and poise that I dreamed of become a Nun and run a Church or a convent one day. Don’t know why, but I felt I was born to be a Nun. Period. My career was decided! So evidently, I never missed my Moral science lessons whilst secretly wondering and wishing for a peek what lies underneath the white coif our nuns wore! Always wondering if they had long hair or short hair or any hair at all!

Apparently, my best friend in school was a #Catholic and she used to attend the Catholic class while the other non-Catholics like me attended the Moral Science classes…and even though I loved my moral science classes but still the budding nun in me was curious to know what happens in a Catholic-class and why they were more privileged to be taken to the church more often than us! I even started to think if being a Catholic was a sure shot way and the only way to become a Nun! I was so in love with the last surname that Christians had like Martin, Thomas, Lewis, Carlos, Cruz as they seem to be so trendy and happening that I even picked on a few to choose from just in case my father agrees to convert. So gathering all my courage, I shared my thoughts of changing my religion and my ambition to become a nun with my father one day. He kept looking at me for a few seconds without any expression on his face and then he smiled and patted my back, but didn’t gave me a clear yes or a no. My heart sank and so did my dream and career, or so I thought. The following week my father called me and gave me a framed picture of Jesus. Does that meant we are all converting? Again, no yes or no from him, just a smile. I was thrilled, I asked mom if she would allow me to place my new god frame in her little temple that she had created in her room. The temple had all the Gods she believed in from #Krishna#Durga#Ganpati#Gurunanak and now the God I had my faith in-Jesus! I even taught my mom the sign of the cross and we often prayed together.

All in my family including my grand mom now knew a few Christian prayers courtesy me and my father kept his promise to take me to church once every month. As years passed by my desire to be a nun and convert my religion slowly left me. Now when I look back to it all seems so silly, but how beautiful and innocent were those days… So what if I couldn’t become a Nun…I am glad I still am a Super-Mum!

That was the impact of my school on me. Whilst my school made me understand the special place of my family in my life, it also taught me to embrace the good values & morals each culture-religion had to offer. And of course ,the best month in school was December as Christmas was celebrated with much fanfare and grandeur, with skits and dances, tuck shops and a trip to the Old Age Home. Every class had a small Xmas tree fully loaded with bells, balls, stars etc which we were asked to get from home for the decoration in the class. Our very own Princy (Respected Principal) announced a prize for the Best decorated class for Christmas each year. This festival brought with it the charm of Giving and Sharing.
No wonder this festival holds a special place in my heart. The essence & The spirit of Christmas is something I have grown up with. The singing of the Carols and the sound of the bells from the churches still give me goose bumps, the celebrations and fest in school, the plum cakes, the jingle and sparkles all around. Though, I am not a Christian, but Christmas is my festival too and I feel the onus is on me to let my children feel and experience the spirit this festival too. So, every year we put up a Christmas tree at home, decorate it with all the enthusiasm, buy presents for each other and pretend Santa still exists We watch the trending Christmas movies on TV and gorge on the Rum and Plum cakes from our #favourite gâteau shops, accompanied by a cup of hot chocolate for the kids while we wine it up!

So, lets cheers to the Spirit of #Christmas and pass on the magic of this festival to even those kids at the signals who sell red Santa caps and reindeer horns oblivious to the significance of the festival or the stories behind it. We have been Santa for our kids on every Christmas, so why not be the Santa to at least one poor child this year.

As another year comes to an end, Let’s be Loving-Giving-Forgiving, and keep spreading the cheer among our little angels, so that they continue to make good and beautiful memories in this beautiful world along the way.

Hope you all have a #Wonderful #Insightful and #Peaceful new year ahead!

#thewonderwomenworld #GetPoeticWithPreeti #Mondays #wonderwomenwriters #festival #India #UnityinDIversity #celebrate

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