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I’m a business owner. And a mom. And a volunteer. And a wife. And a daughter. And a sister. And a sister-in-law. And an auntie. And… the list goes on and on and on.

I have no doubt your list is the same. You’re probably everything to everyone, and you are probably really good at it too. You’re probably wondering how you’re going to make it through the holiday season without losing your mind. Or your crap. Or both.

So here’s the deal.

We’re going to breathe together.

Ready? Seriously.

Breathe in.

One. Two. Three. Four.

Now breathe out.

One. Two. Three. Four.

Do it again.

Breathe in.

One. Two. Three. Four.

Breathe out.

One. Two. Three. Four.

Alright, good. You just took a second for yourself. That’s all I’m going to ask of you. You’ve got enough on your plate.

I’m not here to tell you to slow down.

You’re smart. And you know slowing down would probably be smart. But you’re not going to.

I know you well enough to know you simply can’t. You dream of it. (You may even dream of slipping on ice and breaking both legs and being bound to a hospital for a few days, but also you’re fully aware of the recovery period after those few glorious days in the hospital, so you’re not going to do it.)

And also, you know you’re darn steady on your feet and won’t slip, no matter how slippery the ice may be.

No, I’m not going to tell you to slow down.

I’m not even going to tell you to cut something out or say no.

Because I won’t take that advice – so why would I give it?

Here’s what we’re going to do together:

We’re going to laugh with the chaos.

Because the chaos is surely laughing at us, too. So we’re going to laugh with it. We’re going to look around, see the chaos for what it is, and laugh. We’re going to laugh because we got ourselves INTO this chaos, so we may as well enjoy it.

We’re going to laugh at the chaos.

Because it IS total chaos, isn’t it? We’re going to laugh at it. At the absurdity of it. At the AUDACITY of it. Maybe we got ourselves into some of this chaos, but there’s no way we got ourselves into all of it. How dare it show up. But also, it’s here so we may as well laugh in its face. Nothing will anger it more. Let’s laugh at it so chaos knows we’re not on the same side, even if we’re in this together.

We’re going to laugh despite the chaos.

Survival mode, my friend. We’re going to laugh and enjoy the silly things that happen. We’re going to laugh at the messes. (Currently, as I write this, my 18-month-old has taken a kids Ikea bowl full of Costco pretzel crisps, dumped them out, and stepped on them until the crumbs look like carpet out of the 70’s. That’s my life. And probably yours too.)

Because this is real life. It’s not always pretty, shiny, picturesque family trips to elegant Christmas parties.

Often times it’s looking around and trying not to cry because your house is a disaster and you know you still have to figure out what your kid is going to wear for Grinch day at school. And you know you didn’t sleep enough because you were up late wrapping presents and had to get up early to meet that long-overdue deadline for work.

We’re in this together, though. So, full disclosure: it’s a bit hectic over here. And I know it is there too. We’ll show each other some grace, and we’ll show each other a little more empathy, and we’ll do our part of injecting a little kindness into the world…

…despite the chaos

You’ve got this.

You are a freaking warrior. And you’re kicking butt, even though you don’t feel like it.

Keep your chin up. January’s almost here…