There’s commentary on everything these days, including the inaccuracy of beloved Christmas carols like this one.
Silent Night. As in, the night wouldn’t have been so silent, because have you ever seen the birth of a baby? ‘Cause there’s all this mess and pain, and since when are babies quiet anyway?
Sleep in heavenly peace? Ya, right.
But I love this song. It’s one of my favourite Christmas carols, and I don’t really want it criticized. People, leave my song alone.
What I love about this song, besides the fact that it’s been part of every Christmas I can remember, it’s on almost every Christmas album ever made, and it’s one of the few songs to which I know all the words… besides that, what I love about Silent Night is the feeling I get when I hear it.
A mixture of nostalgia and peace and a whole bunch of warm fuzzies. It just does that to me.
And yes, I remember what it was like. The labour and the agony and the mess, but I also remember this.
I remember the deep place I went to each time I was birthing a child. I remember how it all became so focused. It became my whole existence, me and my body and breathing through it all. Everything narrowed to this one thing we were doing together, baby and me.
This is the silence, the holy, of that night. The focus on the babe, his coming and then his being here, in flesh and blood and yes, the mess that goes with it. The mess of humanity and the world. My mess and yours.
But there is a silence in a birth, before it all begins.