Well a Happy Holiday to you too!
Ever noticed how this time of year tends to bring out the worst in people? Who hasn't right? Between today and yesterday evening I manged to upset two long time friends with pleasantries. Granted sometimes it takes understanding my personality to realize that it's not a rude comment, but both of these people should know me better much better then that.
My simple holiday request is that everyone take sometime to breath and forget about the retail end of the holiday, because that's where the biggest problem is. It's the shopping, over thought and over spending that kills us this time of year. Take a chill pill, relax, and try to enjoy this time of year with your friends and family instead of tearing them down or trying to out purchase each other. I personally think the smallest well thought things are so much better. Today a coworker left me a gift that was a complete surprise to me because we don't exchange, but she saw this item and said she thought of me. I gasped at this pretty long black sequin scarf. It's so me and it's such a small thing.
My more complicated request is for people to stop shoving their traditions at me. I am no ones charity case. Many times I feel as though I am invited to people's homes so that they feel like they are doing the ultimate good deed and in return I feel awkward. This year has been a touch easier to handle. Although, in the last few days as people are leaving for holiday vacations people keep asking where I will be for Christmas. I do have a friends home I go to, but I honestly would rather spend the time by myself. This is not my holiday and people are not willing to accept that and they get angry with me if I choose to stay home. As though somehow I am being rude to them by not celebrating. My friend and her family does not get angry and that's probably why I go. The more people push Christmas on me the more I want nothing to do with it. Other then movies and music, but not the ones they play on WALK 97.5, sorry but who ever is picking the play list is really not picking winners lately.
I like Yule (or Lilith or Winter Solstice). I have said many times before I have a Pagan heart. I understand it in a weird connection to nature way. It just makes sense to me and because it predates Christianity many of the traditions are the same. Except Yule was yesterday and Christmas is in two days. Oh and I believe Yule was/is a week long celebration of the return of the sun and I like sunlight a lot. Just knowing I won't have to walk through the dark to my car soon is reason enough for me to love this holiday; the promise of cold weather and snow, not so much.
My other gripe is that when you go to these stores for holiday gifts everything is red and green. I purchased two gift box type presents and they were clearly intended for Christmas gifts. Whatever happened to non-denominational? A department manager was trying to find Chanukah decorations and she could not find them. After speaking with her and doing my own shopping last weekend, I noticed I couldn't either. I would be so annoyed if I were Jewish. Not only are all the gift items Christmas themed but finding a menorah is like finding a needle in a haystack let alone any decorations.
At work we distribute chocolate and candy canes on Christmas and I had to purchase Santa medallions because even though I tried very hard to get something non-denominational they just don't exist. I looked for snowflakes and snowmen, both were much too small. We can't buy place-mat's that are not non-denominational and even our decorations are "supposed to be." Hence my door saying Jingle Bells and Happy Holidays with an Elf and a Reindeer. Santa and Mrs. Claus are hanging out on the file cabinet. I am surprised at how single minded retail is when it comes to candy as well as previously mentioned gift sets. As a buyer I can say our distributor did not have non-denominational candy. I tried. Ho-hum.
I went on some tangents. Please everyone, calm down. It's not the apocalypse. It's a holiday. It's not the first and it's not the last. Breathe and stop yelling at your children in the stores. Guess what? They are just as wound up as you are.