Friday, November 03, 2006

christmas spirit

I'm trying to get into the Christmas spirit but for some reason it's not working. What is wrong with me? Every year I have started listening to Christmas music from the beginning of October when the weather changes. It annoys my husband so that's an added benefit but I think in October is when I realize I won't see my family at Christmastime and so the emotional roller coaster begins. Then usually by the end of October I gather my wits about me and decide to make "this Christmas the best Christmas ever" despite the fact that the odds are against me. I go shopping and buy new Christmas ornaments or lights and start thinking about Christmas presents for my family. Also, usually about this time we'll start planning Christmas events at the church and I get all excited about these, too. "This year we'll go all out", I'll think to myself.

This will hold me through most of November and then reality will set in. I'll see a show on TV that will be advertising the best "love hotels" to take your girlfriend to on Christmas Eve. It's like prom night for high schoolers! It totally takes away from my Christmas high. Also, at this time, I will realize that my husband will not have Christmas Day off from work. How could Christmas not be a national holiday?!?!

I put on my bravest face and put up my Christmas tree and lights and try to make Christmas alive to my kids by relating memories of Christmas past and showing sappy Hollywood Christmas movies. I make my own little Christmas bubble but as the actual day grows closer the feelings of doubt rise up and I start to panic a little bit. My kids don't believe in Santa! They've never even seen Santa! I'll be walking through the mall and just want to scream at people, "You're ruining Christmas, you're ruining Christmas". I suffer from the same bit of culture shock every year. It's pathetic, you'd think I'd see it coming by now.

But this is when I realize that I have to get a grip on my expectations of what Christmas should be. I stop and think to myself about what Christmas is really about. It's about Jesus' birth (hello!) and about family. Really that's all I need. Maybe the Christmas that my kids will remember will be different from what I experienced but they will have enjoyed it nonetheless.

And then in the blink of an eye, it's over. Christmas is done and it was more wonderful and the kids were more involved than the year before and I'm happy and so is my husband and seriously what more could I ask for?

Now I know why I haven't gotten into the Christmas spirit yet this year. I don't have to endure the emotional roller coaster because this year I will go and be with my family and have a celebration that my children will remember forever because it will be the most unique Christmas they will experience until the next time we go to Canada for Christmas. So I'm saving myself (and my emotions) for my mom's cooking, and eggnog lattes (decaf, of course) and pictures with Santa and snow on the mountains and people being nice to each other just because the Christmas spirit is in the air.


Hannah said...

I know exactly what you mean! I haven't thought about Christmas trees or gotten into any kind of frenzy over who-gets-what. I am so looking forward to this year, and even though I know it's going to be four hysterical days, I also know it's going to be so much fun and we're going to talk about it for years. Like the Christmas we had up at Whistler when we were little and Uncle Brent and Uncle Brock put mustard and ketchup on their waffles. See? Memories to last a lifetime!

Sarah said...

I totally didn't remember that until you wrote it! That was a great trip.