Yep. I was Scrooge.
by Dave K
Last night I took my family to see “A Christmas Carol.” It’s become a tradition for us, and is really one of the few holiday traditions we celebrate. I’ve seen this show many many times, but this one hit me especially hard.
For decades, I was a Scrooge when it came to Christmas. I could rant and rant about killing trees, and commercialism, and phony temporary brotherhood. I was a humbug through and through.
Mostly though I got sad and depressed.
Then one year my daughter, 10, announced “I don’t like Christmas either, because Daddy gets so sad.”
This devastated me.
Arrows in, Arrows Out.
I went to I-Group the next day and did some big work around the holiday and my mom and the way she handled it (and mis-handled it.)
In the process, I came to a new place of understanding and compassion for my mom (who had already passed).
I opened my heart to the spirit behind the holiday: the same spirit we celebrate and cultivate in the ManKind Project: service, empathy, generosity, optimism, and of course love.
Since that night, I have actually enjoyed Christmas. I learned how to show up for my family in December, how to let go of my cynicism and judgments and breathe deep of pine and mistletoe.
Last night, at the theatre, I realized that Scrooge had his own hero’s journey, his own New Warrior Training Adventure.
He explored his past, he woke up to the present, and he took responsibility for the future. And it shook him to his bones. He found gratitude; just for being alive, for breathing, for being human.
In the morning when he wakes in his own bed, he dances and sings and says “I am a baby again.”. And he races out to give away his heart and his money.
I had started crying earlier in the show (really as soon as Tiny Tim appeared) but now I was gushing.
I reached over to touch my son, and scratched his back and felt so much love for him and my daughter and wife.
I felt so much gratitude.
I FEEL so much gratitude.
So to you brave and loving guides, you wizards and angels of the past and present, you irrepressible Bob Crachits, I thank you. If not for you Men and this work, I’d still be a Scrooge, hiding in the dark, separate, eating the thin gruel of depression. Instead, I am free.
It’s a beautiful day, and it’s Christmas time, and I am alive. I am a baby, again.
dave / king bEE
– is a deeply personal issue that everyone decides for himself. Sometimes the price is high, sometimes low. But this is not very important for life. Life is an interesting thing. And the price on Viagra – too.