Hallelujah. Most renditions of this song give me the chills. I have always loved the Leonard Cohen song done by Jeff Buckley (at any time of year) but there is something around Christmas time that makes the music get under my skin, crawl through my emotions, and often bring tears to my eyes. Last year I came across this version from: Cloverton and this past week I found this one from “Wounded Warriors.”
There is something even more gut wrenching about watching those that have fought for our freedom, have been wounded, and singing such a beautiful song of praise. It makes me think about all the good I have in my life. So much goodness. Now, savor all the good you have with those you love, those that you fear, and those that you dislike. Take this holiday time to slow down, be more present, laugh, eat, play, and think Hallelujah. (Mental note: take my own advice).
December has gone fast this year. It baffles me that Christmas is tomorrow. I have done everything I can to not step foot in any store, and do whatever shopping I can online this year. Is it sad that Christmas has in some ways made me want to stay away from people? That this holiday now makes me cringe? Our credit cards have made us greedy, stressed out, and potentially the true meaning of Christmas is lost in bags, receipts, and frustrated shoppers.
Somehow during the weeks between Thanksgiving and Christmas, it is music that makes me grounded. I am usually one to quickly run out of the store, or change the radio station when a Christmas song is played before Thanksgiving. Yet, it is Christmas music that takes the Scrooge out of me. It is one of the few things that gives me a nostalgic feeling about Christmas, and reminds me of my father and his avid love for Christmas. I wish I knew what made him enjoy it so much. He loved decorating the house for Christmas, with lights, wreaths, our tree, and other Santa figurines around the house. Was he trying to compensate for Christmas’ he might not have enjoyed as a child? Or was he recreating his own memories?
Chris and I have leaned towards Christmas being a quiet day together, and potentially further towards “just another day in our life.” We lean towards a simpler life. Why has it come to that for us? We usually do not trade gifts, and this year we never got around to putting up the Christmas tree. Sometimes we decide to find a gift together for our home that we can share with each other. We always lean towards doing nothing rather than doing something just to fill a need to give a gift.
So what makes me nostalgic again this year for Christmas past? Music. I have always loved the Leonard Cohen song: Hallelujah, and my favorite is the Jeff Buckley version. Over the weekend, I came across this “Cloverton” version of “A Hallelujah Christmas.” I especially love the beginning with just the piano and vocals. For some reason I feel it in my bones. It makes me think about past Christmas’ with my parents. I wanted to share and, if you celebrate, wish you a wonderful Christmas. Cherish this special time with your family and friends.