I have a confession to make.  I know January 1st brings a New Year with new resolutions and a fresh, new start.  Holiday stuff is supposed to be all packed away neatly and the smoothie maker should be running full time – this is especially true at a professional organizer’s house.  But at this house, we do things alittle differently and our Christmas Decorations are still up.

As the parent of a child who naturally sees life at the extremes, through all or nothing eyes, I’ve developed some mantras I verbalize from time to time.  “Let go of the all or nothing thinking”, “Can we meet in the middle on this one”, “Your way is not necessarily the right way”  are a few that come out of my mouth regularly.  In the last few years, my kids have learned to recognize when I’m acting in a way that might warrant a few of these mantras turned back on me.  One big one was my belief that Christmas ended and the New Year started on January 1.

As I began to look at it through the eyes of a sensory child, I saw what a tough transition January can be.  You have a transition back to school (and what a long, academic month January is!), short days and long, dark nights, and to top it all off, all those fun glittery lights and warm holiday decorations get ripped out from underneath you as you brave the cold, dark month ahead.

So here’s why I now give my kids (and myself) an extra week of Christmas Decorations:

  • As someone who believes in the power of breaking things down and softening transitions, there is no bigger transition for sensory kids than the one from Holiday break to the January routine.
  • Everything looks better at the end of the day with fun, glittery lights – homework, my skin, and the darkness that creeps up at 4pm.
  • Writing holiday thank you cards is so much easier sitting by a decorated tree with new toys and gift cards still sitting underneath – nice visual reminders make this chore so much more palatable.
  • Sensory kids have a much easier time saying good-bye to the Holidays after they’ve braved their first week back in the routine.  They might even help you pack a few things away.

Here’s a New Years Resolution to consider – pay attention to when you are falling into viewing life in the extremes.  Have the courage to take your own advice, challenge your old beliefs, and take the softer, gentler way.  And bring some fun, glittery lights along for the ride.