It’s Christmas Eve. At 8:30pm tonight, I’ll be singing downtown in a beautiful Christmas Eve service. There will be Christmas trees, there will be lights, there will be “O Come All Ye Faithful.” There will even be a party afterwards, complete with champagne.
But I won’t be home. I’m here in Kansas.
I’m a singer, and that’s part of my job.
My mom is in Arkansas. The rest of my (small but mighty) family is in Illinois. This is the second year I haven’t been home for Christmas, which seems like it’s Not a Big Deal, but.. it is.
Don’t misunderstand me. Being a singer is awesome. I love it more than anything in this world. I get to enrich people’s lives with music, enhance their worship experience.
Travel is pretty cool, too.
Being a forever tourist has its perks–for one thing, I can always claim “I’m not from here!” when people try to shoot me nasty looks while driving. I love seeing new places but not being tied down to them. I can stay in a place just long enough to get tired of it–then I’m off somewhere else.
Still, there’s something special about being in the place you call home, especially during this time of year.
For those of us who have devoted our lives to music and won’t be home for Christmas, this can be a tough time. It isn’t really sad, it’s just strange. And we make it work. We seek community and love from those around us. We build small families at our church jobs, our Messiah gigs, our concerts.
If you happen to meet a musician today or tomorrow–ask if you can hug them. They very well may need it more than you know.