It’s the day after Christmas. It is empty under the tree. Most of our visitors have returned home. In place of beautifully wrapped gifts, we have piles of torn paper and empty gift bags. Instead of artfully prepared food, we have a refrigerator full of leftovers. The lights don’t seem to burn as bright as we sit and ponder when to start taking the decorations down. There are gifts to put away and decisions to make about the things they replace. What goes and what stays? What do we look forward to next? When do we go back to work and when do the kids go back to school?

It seems the day after Christmas leaves more work than joy. More decisions than rest. The day is festive, but the aftermath can be overwhelming. But if we look around at the high points in life, the day after looks a lot the same. At least what follows looks a lot the same.

We can’t wait to get married and we spend an enormous amount of time to create this perfect day to find out marriage is a lot more work than a wedding. We do everything in our power to land that perfect job only to realize that the work is hard and the people there are not that much different than our last job. We get our dream house but find out it has nightmares of its own. The day after a lot of things brings us back to reality.

So if today you are having the Christmas hangover and you are disheartened because everything is upside down instead of perfectly decorated right side up, don’t be. Lift up your head. Put on some good music. Do the work that needs to be done. Your life will be filled with the day after. Those are the days where we make the most difference.

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