Saturday, November 10, 2007

Not gonna dread it.

I'm changing my ways. It's November 10th, and so far I haven't told anyone how I'm dreading a) winter or, b) the holidays.

It's not been a conscious choice. Some kind of epiphany must have occurred during my sleep, because I'm actually looking forward to Christmas this year. I caught myself looking at some new tree decorations, and I'm skimming the catalogs with an eye toward gift-giving. (The past five years, I've chucked them all, muttering "Bah, Humbug. Money grubbing retailers. Wake me after New Year's.")

I doubt if I'll be hitting the malls on the Friday after Thanksgiving. And I will continue to cringe at the jewelry store commercials implying that if you don't get your honey a big honkin' rock, it's not actually Christmas and, by the way, you're a slacker/loser.

But I believe there are ways to enjoy the holidays without buying into the whole commercial, materialistic hairball. For instance, I'm planning to find some live holiday music every weekend. And buy some new boots so I can walk in the snow (if we get any). I'm going to start writing my holiday cards next week, and I'm going to try to track down/stalk the old friends who haven't kept me in the loop, address-wise.

I probably won't bake, because much of that yummy stuff is poison to me, but I do plan to do some healthy cooking to keep the house cozy and welcoming.

Some years we've had a big party, but this year I think we'll opt for inviting a few friends at a time for a relaxing meal and maybe a game of Scrabble or two.

The internal holiday adjustment will be more of a challenge. Both of my parents died at Christmastime, and it's become a habit for me to view the "most wonderful time of the year" as "Parental Death Season." This year I'm determined to keep the grief in perspective. It helps to consider this observation by C.S. Lewis:

"Part of every misery is, so to speak, the misery's shadow or reflection: the fact that you don't merely suffer but have to keep on thinking about the fact that you suffer. I not only live each endless day in grief, but live each day thinking about living each day in grief."

Huh! It's not just me who romanticizes personal tragedy. And now that I've acknowledged the unfairness for this year, I can get on with reinventing the holidays for my family and myself.

Maybe it will never again be pure joy like when my sister Lisa and I were kids (photo above). But dreading anything is lazy and bad for the soul.

So death to dread!

And Merry (Early) Christmas!

1 comment:

Stace said...

ha! that is so funny that I was just telling you how excited I am about Christmas decorations!

I hate those diamond ads too, but that's to be expected from a woman who picked out a $37
wedding ring :D

You and your sis are so cute. Mol the Doll, indeed!