Is it me, or do the holidays suck?
Admit it—just a little bit—they do.
Pleasing so many people that I have almost zero space left over for myself. Moving between party and function and schedule to schedule and my brain is fried and frazzled.
Okay, I didn’t—but that’s because I took zinc and bee pollen and rested every chance I could get—which wasn’t often. (I have a three-year-old.)
Yet, I know many who did get sick and, more, I know many who are heart sick.
Heart sick over missing loved ones during their short visits where everyone they know is crammed into a teeny tiny space.
Heart-achy over not having enough money for gifts.
Conversely, I know others who are so heart happy that I’m left feeling like the grinch.
For real, I’ve felt like the grinch this Christmas.
Because I don’t want to buy everyone I love one small item that my budget affords (even though I will and I’ll, ironically, do it with love). And I don’t want to drive five hours with my miserable toddler crammed into her carseat, for five minutes in a space with 20 different people. Also, I’m being selfish this year and—for the first time, perhaps, ever—I’m doing what I want.
So what do I want?
I want to wake up in my own bed in worn pajamas—and drink coffee with no bra on.
I want to eat the same shitty cereal that I eat for breakfast, day in and day out.
I want to watch my cheerful daughter’s face light up along with the tree’s lights—in my own living room.
In short, I want my every ordinary day, only a little more…sparkly.
A touch shinier.
A tad more joyful.
And I’m happy for this—I know that I’m not a grinch—because I love my life—my every day, ordinary, daily world, enough to find this to be my wish-upon-a-star, under-the-Christmas-tree ideal.
I am so thankful.
I’m thankful that—for the first time ever—I had the courage to tell those I love most that I won’t see them this year—unless they come to me.
And I’m writing—another thing I love to do—and I’m watching my child sing into her microphone while watching her favorite Christmas special (online and hooked to the TV because I have rabbit ears and no cable—and I’m thankful for this too).
I’m looking over at her and I know that I’m doing the right thing this year by doing what my little family needs from me (rather than what the rest of the world needs from me).
Because I wish this wasn’t true, but it is: I can’t please everyone so I’ve got to please myself.
Alright, this might be slightly off. (Marginally too Scrooge-ish.)
Instead, let’s try this: I can’t please everyone so I follow my heart.
And my heart says this:
Those who truly love me—and wish me a merry Christmas—want me to wake up, braless, in my favorite, cozy pajamas on my worn, red sofa.
They want me to eat the same crappy cereal that I look forward to every morning and, more, they know that my life is at home with an extremely active, tiny lady, and a hard-working man who has only the 25th off from work.
And everyone else?
Well, bah humbug.
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Editor: Rachel Nussbaum