Sunday, December 09, 2007

Christmas Spirit

I've been afraid.

Afraid that I wouldn't get any "Christmas Spirit" this year. Because my children are going other places I don't (yet) have plans when I'll see them next. Don't get me wrong, DH's birthday is this month andI have a few tricks up the proverbial sleeve for THAT, and there will be SOME sort of out-of-the-ordinary activity related to him and the extended holiday season.

But it was having an excuse to go "all out" for the kids that was apparently MY raison d'etre at "Christmas."
In past years, there were church services to participate in (sang in the choir), or "just" attend. (The church I affiliated with was very big into getting REALLY dressed up for the late night Christmas Eve service. You'd have thought we were being broadcast on Cable TV or something. There were sparkles, jewelry, velvets, satins etc. And usually tympani and brass in the choir loft.

But this year (and regular readers won't be surprised, nor, I hope, offended), the "religion" bits just seem irrational. Actually, even the head honcho priest at aforementioned church says HE doesn't like Christmas or believe a lot of what people claim in the "church's" name.

So it came down to the kids. Poor dears. They had this burden of being the target of my enthusiasm. Eeek. Accck. I know what that's like. It's AWFUL. Been there, done that.

So... it may not seem like I'm trying hard this year. But I am.

What I AM trying is greater honesty, congruence and flexibility.

I may NOT have "Christmas Spirit." (It's OK with me if I don't get bamboozled by merchandisers -- even though some of those commercials are enticing.) I WOULD like to be excited, hopeful, happy. At least some of the time.

Well, today, after two and a half deep crying jags, I DID get happy. And I got productive. And hopeful.

And I bet tomorrow will be about the same: Tears (for my friend whose melanoma still seems to be kicking her *ss), tears (for recognizing how deep some of my OWN griefs and grieving have been and continue to be, tears (because people I love aren't treated as well as they deserve), and then relief, acceptance, and the return of good cheer, bad puns, and optimism.


Anonymous said...

I love this. And I love the cute little ornaments too! Be kind to yourself. :)

Sherry said...

It's probably OK not to catch the holiday spirit sometimes, especially when that holiday coincides with the awful stress of worrying about a sick friend. Been there. Be kind to yourself, be kind to others, and look for things that make you smile. Good art? Funny movies? A long soak in bubbles? See if you can find a kernel of something you love about Christmas, like hearing from friends, looking at lights, or eating a special once-a-year-treat. If all else fails, I felt better with professional support. Hugs.

Holly said...

Hugs across the miles and the internets because I totally get it. There is something about this season that brings emotions to the surface more easily than the rest of the year. It's ok to feel sad sometimes, and for me, LIttle MIss Sunshine, to say that is a BIG deal. Christmas spirit isn't all it's cracked up to be.

roro said...

Such an eloquent post! It definitely stirs things up when holiday traditions get changed or messed with. This is the first year ever that I haven't spent Christmas with my family and I'm not quite sure what to do with myself either. While it's nice to have a break from some of the stressful parts of the holiday, there's lots I'm going to miss.

In other news, a couple of those ornaments aren't wearing pants. Eggnog bender?

wenders said...

Oh, Mama. We have Christmas in our hearts whenever we're together, regardless of whether it's December or not.

And I find it fascinating to see which tricks and traditions I'm putting in place in my own life. As in, Man, I need a glass pickle.