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Alba Iulia
Monday, January 18, 2021

Christmas in our hearts


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Raine Cabral Laysico | RAINING GRACE
Raine Cabral Laysico | RAINING GRACE
For comments or feedback, email Raine on rainecabral@gmail.com.

It’s that time of year, the most wonderful time of the year – Christmas!

A time to reflect on the roller coaster ride that was 2020. A year no one expected.

A year where the world was forced indoors, where we stood still – waking us up to what really matters. Forcing us to look inward instead of outwards

We’ve had our own share of ups and downs. Trials and tribulations that seem insurmountable but somehow we’ve crossed the Rubicon safely and are rebuilding – focused on the future. 

To long time readers, you would be aware that December is also the birthday of my only ‘sonshine’, Kaizen. In last year’s issue, I talked about his birth. This time around, I want to share with you how we’ve introduced Christmas to him.

Much like the way we talked about coronavirus, the need to stay home and stay safe. The way we approach Christmas isn’t through the material things he would receive. Rather, what he can give. As a newly minted four-year-old, we ask him about what he can share. Chores he can do – starting the dishwasher, putting his clothes in the wash and starting the washing machine and yes, putting things back in its place. There were other things too like choosing to be kind, making him realise that actions have consequences, and just generally opening up the whole range of emotions available to him. Allowing him to express himself but also setting ground rules for him. To be honest, consistency is what I struggle with as a parent. 

Of course, he still received birthday gifts – a new bike and a toy car courtesy of his Nana, Lolo and Lola as well as a slew of other presents from his aunts and uncles. However, our focus is not and never will be on the material things.

Things are just things.

Experiences, memories, the kindness that you give out to the Universe – that is the true meaning of Christmas.

As I build Kaizen’s foundation, I am then provided with the opportunity to reinforce my own. 

  • Kaizen Cabral Laysico
  • Kaizen Cabral Laysico
  • Kaizen Cabral Laysico and dad Michael
  • Kaizen Cabral Laysico

To be completely transparent, in my close to two decades in Australia, I’ve never bought a brand new car. It’s always second hand. This year was also the first time wherein I didn’t buy new clothes or shoes. The older I get, the more I appreciate the value of priceless moments. 

I practise gratitude everyday – being thankful for everything big and small. 

Waking up every morning is already a blessing. Half-full instead of half-empty – cultivating a positive mindset. 

And as I plant the seed of living a meaningful life in my son. I, in turn, am reminded of what it means to truly have a grateful and humble heart. 

How about you? What’s your biggest realisation this year? What does Christmas mean to you?

Cabral and Laysico Family at Christmas

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