Every year I say the same thing. I want to get ahead of the madness. I want to decorate early so that I can enjoy it longer, I want to find the perfect pair of pajamas, the perfect ugly sweater, the perfect dessert recipe. I want to shop for gifts earlier this year and not have to go around crazy rushing the last few days before. And every year I end up a stressed out mess. Some things I wanted to do- I didn’t, and things I didn’t want to happen- happened.
Because in the mist of my already stressful daily life- throw in the holiday chaos and I’m a ball of nerves.
I did a whole post on this topic last year, titled “Have the holidays become too stressful?” And it’s crazy that every word can still ring true for this year too.
As I get older, I try to do gifts for everyone and all the kids, and along with being in two other weddings coming up, (one right after Christmas) my funds are kind of low and it’s been kind of tough to budget everything in. At the end of the day I wish I could just focus on the real meaning of this time of year. The birth of Christ. The celebration of love, friendship, and family. A memory of togetherness. You don’t have to put a price tag on any of that.
It’s hard not to let my cynical side out during this time. You see others decorating and buying gift after gift, everything just seems so easy for them. They know how to get
shit done. But I know how Facebook is deceiving. If I were to put a picture of my tree up, it would look all sparkly and pretty, sure. But it wouldn’t show me hounding my dad to bring up the tree from the basement, or me and my mom stringing beads on each branch with tired eyes. You don’t see the stress. But it’s there, for everyone.
There are two sides to me during this time of year- that girl who wants to be- festive af- that’s what all the kids are saying these days, right?- and that girl who gets overwhelmed from all angles and starts to feel run down and anxious. And the latter is just not the best feeling, especially when society tells you- you should be happy.
Which brings me to my next point- it’s okay to not be ok, during the holidays. It’s ok to feel funky, to feel stressed- or going even further- to feel depressed or sad. For some people the holidays can be really hard. There are people who are grieving a loved one, or who just suffered a terrible heartbreak, or who may be suffering from an illness, or just feeling stressed from work, or some people who may not have jobs at all and are just struggling to make ends meet. Or there may be people who may just be going through something difficult, personally. At times, in life, sometimes when it rains it pours and it could be a combination of a bunch of things that could be hindering one’s Christmas spirit. The truth is, you never know what someone else is going through.
So no, Christmas doesn’t have to be perfect. You don’t have to decorate early, you don’t have to find the perfect gifts for everyone, you don’t have to stress what to wear, or what to bake. Do what you can do, with the means you have, and do it with love. And those who love you will understand you. If not, that’s unfortunate for them. Because yes Christmas is magical, but it’s just another day with the same people and no matter what as long as you are surrounded by the ones you love, celebrating the birthday of our creator, than what more could you really ask for? Materialistic items get shoved in drawers and closets, put in basements, under beds and forgotten about. So why do we put so much weight on it.
I know it’s hard not to. I know it’s sometimes a comparing game. Well they got me this last year, and I only got them this, so this year I have to do better. Or- they got me 5 gifts, so I have to get them 5 gifts. Tit for tat on Christmas? No thanks. 😉
Every year I stress myself out and in the end- it all comes together. It always does. My last minute shopping forces me to make quicker decisions, my baking gets done, my decorations get put up. Whatever needs to get gone, will get done. Whatever doesn’t, won’t. It’s simple really. So why can’t we live more simplistically? It’s about prioritizing. Truth be told I’m not quite the best at doing so myself. But I’m trying to learn to be better at it. Here’s wishing we all learn to take a deeper look at Christmas for what it really is. A time to celebrate who really put us here.
Deep breaths friends, we’ll get through this together!
Have you guys ever felt stressed during the holidays?
Tell me about it in the comments below!