According to the wise and immortal Tevye, without traditions our lives would be as shakey as a fiddler on the roof. I have found this to be true as well. Without our traditions, our culture, who are we? Tevye had his traditions challenged when his three oldest daughters chose to break tradition and marry a man of their own choosing. Each one straying farther and farther from the tradtions that had been passed down and respected since before remembering. Yet as wise as that milkman was, he didn't quite understand that traditions are not set in stone.

Traditions can change, evolve, grow into something new. Just as our lives change and move forward, so must some of our traditions. But let's be honest here. Some things are sacred. Like the Christmas eve feast and the one present you get to open that always turns out to be new pajamas. Then there's the Christmas morning casserole, with a side of oranges and pumpkin roll. Like I said, some things are sacred. But I digress, even these are not set in stone. As much as we would like them to be.

As families grow and change, so must our traditions. When we marry, we begin to include the traditions that our husband or wife grew up with. We form new traditions for our children. Precious memories that will last throughout their lives. Stories that will bring smiles on cloudy days and laughter through the storms. 

Now, some may laugh and say traditions don't matter. They are nothing but silly, sentimental foolishness that will never stand the test of time. I humbly beg to differ. History is full of examples of traditions that have not only lasted generations, but centuries. Holidays in and of themselves are echoes of traditions started by those who lived thousands of years ago.

Halloween, Easter, Christmas, St. Patricks day, The Fourth of July! All of these, and more, are traditions that were began by those who wanted to leave something for the generations to come. Celebrations carried out the same way year after year.

As important as his traditions were to him, Teyve could not stop them from changing. Though it may have seemed to him that his life was becoming shakey, I believe, in the end, that he accepted the fact that his traditions must change. Not completely, but subtley, a little bit at a time. Until they once again they helped him to remain standing on the roof. Tradition, it seems, is the railing that keeps us from falling, as we fiddle our way through life.