Ever since I first learned of the Christmas holiday, probably at age seven, when I moved to the US, I have been attracted to it. Although I could not label myself as a Christian, I remember putting up a nativity scene as a child. I played Christmas carols on an organ and later sang carols with a group in the neighborhood. I was the one that bothered with the tree and presents at Christmas.
I am still into Christmas and have felt the season is too short. I love the carols and singing along. On Christmas eve, we watched “White Christmas,” at my son’s request. This was surprising as we have been trying to expose him to classics and black and white movies. It’s possible he was trying to please us, but he did stay awake throughout. Listening to Bing Crosby belt out “White Christmas” brings tears to my eyes. It is at moments like these that I feel in touch with my “American soul.” It is one thing to appreciate something, it’s quite another to have an emotional response.
At the same time, I know that if I heard a classic Indian song, like from the movie Mother India or others from the ’70s, I would also feel tears come to my eyes.
Maybe it is as a result of truly coming to peace with my bi-cultural heritage that I am able to fully appreciate the beauty of both. I can therefore enjoy singing to “Silent Night” and truly appreciate my peaceful environment while celebrating my baby’s first Christmas.