Finally…an idea. For a week and a half I have made every excuse not to sit my butt down and churn out an entry. So thank you to my Aunt Gina and to Panera Bread in Downers Grove, where the atmosphere is conducive to my creativity (and my sarcastic nature).
I’m not going to channel Robin Robinson, lose it and tell you that Santa Claus isn’t real. I am also not going to offer any sympathy, empathy, pathos, compassion or sensitivity to those who tell me how hard Christmas is for them. I am sick of hearing it. Here it is: suck it up people. You are choosing to feel the way you do, and can therefore choose to feel differently.
The reasons people give me are valid reasons to be upset. You are far away from family and not able to come home for the holidays. Your husband or wife is in the military and currently deployed. An integral family member is ill or dead and it’s just not the same without them. You can’t afford to buy presents for your loved ones. You have to see that one person that you can’t go near without seeing red. Your ex is keeping the kids from you. Your kids are screw-ups. Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.
If you want to choose to destroy the spirit of love, happiness, celebration, thanks and sharing that are meant to be abundant during this time of year and wallow in your miserable mind-frame; by all means do it. Revel in your agony. Bring others into your dramas, make mountains out of mole hills and think of any means possible to make Christmas awful not just for you, but for everyone you come into contact with. Just don’t ask me to feel sorry for you.
If you can change the circumstance that causes you stress, anger, pain, or sadness; do it. There: fixed. More likely though, you can’t do anything about that circumstance. You can however choose to change your reaction to it and rework the negative associations in your mind.
Here are a few suggestions to get you started. Missing someone? Carry on the traditions that you associate with them. Create a whole new set of traditions. Celebrate the way you know they would want you to. Do justice to their memory by doing something that would warm their heart and make them proud. Can’t make it home for the holidays? Remember all the positives in your own life and spend your day helping someone less fortunate than you. Make an attempt to repair a relationship and put no expectations on the other person’s reaction. Can’t afford the presents that your family is asking for? Humble yourself and ask for help. Better yet, get what you can afford and congratulate yourself for looking out for the long-term needs of your family. Find a balance between keeping the magic of the season intact and being responsible with your resources. Got a relative that makes murder sound like a good option? Sign up for a kickboxing class and get that aggression out in a way that won’t lead to prison time. Look for the solution, put some creativity into your thinking…What? Did you expect me to do all the work for you?
If all else fails, talk to your doctor about the large selection of medications on the market to help balance your neurotransmitter levels, allowing you to get through the Christmastime Blues while maintaining an ounce of dignity and without demolishing the joy of others.
Disclaimer: This is not the type of entry about Christmas that my Aunt Gina was pushing for…I have taken her good intentions and bastardized them.