Wednesday, July 7, 2010

{Chrysalis} Traditions

As a kid we had traditions. Grandma gave us oranges at Christmas for awhile. That was a tradition that all of us Grandkids were thankful didn't last. Ha. Every year Aunt Lucy made her pistachio salad for Christmas gatherings. Each winter Dad would buy a box of oranges from the church. If Mom took us camping, an educational "nature walk" was to be had. We all have traditions from our childhood. Things we looked forward to even if we didn't. Things we expected. Anticipated. Things as simple as a favorite dish. Tradition represents normalcy. Stability. Consistency. 

It's necessary.

As we grow up and marry, have children.... we begin our own traditions. I have never really until this moment sat down to recognize and collect Kaser family traditions. But I know that every Christmas morning we head over to Adrian's mom's house. Every Fourth of July we grill with Dad and then head to North Liberty fireworks. Each July represents the birthdays of both of my children - a birthday party with family is to be orchestrated, celebrated. Every fall I want to recklessly drive into the pumpkin stand that sits in the middle of the town intersection. That never changes, sadly, renegade that I am.  Every fall I buy buttermilk cookies from Amish Acres & cinnamon lamp oil from Borkholders. And to take us back to the topic that is today: Every summer we head to New Buffalo beach for sun, play-time in the water, rock climbing, dune climbing and the grand finale that is Redamaks. 

I said in an earlier post that every week, once a week I will try to post a Chrysalis topic. One that involves learning, growth. The word Chrysalis refers to the third state of the butterfly metamorphosis - it is a time where the caterpillar is broken down and its parts - literally rearranged in order to become the most beautiful and final stage. Growth and wisdom come from transformation. Transformation doesn't happen without change.

What I have learned - and recently - is that traditions silently mold us, shape us into who we are. They are insignificant until we recognize this. And when we do in fact realize the importance traditions hold in our lives - the more we try to initiate for our children, ourselves. Traditions are in essence a glue. The melding that comes from anticipating something you do together - the memories that precede it from last year - the joy of expectancy in what next year holds - it is all a small but vastly important part of what makes up our lives. 

Traditions make our lives rich. Traditions are sweet sentiments of yesterday, today and tomorrow. 
Traditions document our progress, our changing, our aging, our life.

Traditions carry us. 
Make one, or two.