We wish each other a peaceful and happy Christmas and for many it will be. Family gatherings, shared food and presents, laughter and fun. Beach picnics are being planned.
But the lead up is already getting stressful. On a minor personal level I have caused and been the victim of parking rage - as I reversed to avoid a collision with someone backing out of a parking place, I frightened a pedestrian who was wallking past behind me. He banged on my roof and opened my car door to shout at me. Startled, I shouted back! Not at all peaceful.
On a world scale there are brutal, heart-breaking tragedies in many places. And those are the ones which reach us in the news. There will be many more where people are living in quiet desperation, whether in fear of a vicious attack or of slow starvation.
What to do?
Stay calm and be tolerant. If possible, stay out of carparks!
Give generously, not just to family and friends who may well have plenty, but to organisations who can care for those who are not so lucky.
Simplify and make the day a happy gathering but not the culmination of weeks of stress. Perfection is not required. Love is.
Be present. Your kind attention is a gift in itself.
Remember it's only one day. Every other day of our lives is just as important and is just as much an opportunity to be loving, generous, attentive to others in our lives. In other words, to be the best of ourselves.