My friend, Boyd Harris, over at the Horror Library Blog-O-Rama got me thinking about the pressures of Christmas, and that set me on a small harmless rant.
I love the magic of Chrismas, the lights and the music and the excitement of the children. But for me, one of the things that can take the joy out of the holidays is the pressure to conform or perform - perfect gifts, lots of money spent, beautiful decorating, a pristine house, cookie baking, and the big meal around the perfect table surrounded by happy people. No wonder we're all exhausted just thinking about it.
Anyway, my Christmas is a lot more pleasant these days because I no longer conform. This year I bought what I could afford, for the most part. My lights aren't up yet, neither is the tree - it's been too cold but I'll get to it, maybe. The gifts aren't wrapped yet and when they are, they won't have perfectly creased corners or be perfectly adorned with just the right coordinated bows - but they will eventually be wrapped. And I think we'll eat out for Christmas or just do something simple. I might bake; I might not.
My moratoreum on Christmas perfection has reduced my performance anxiety enormously. Don't get me wrong, I know there are folks who LOVE preparing all the holiday trimmings - I wished they'd come to my house and do it all for me (please!).
And I'm glad they're out there doing the light shows in their yards and giving awesome parties for the rest of us who prefer the spectator sport aspect of the holidays.
I'll be with my family in all our beautiful messy imperfection, and we'll have a good day. I might even light a cozy fire - if I feel like it.
I'm a little like Hermey, the Misfit Elf, but I'm happy.
Happy Holidays to you all from Fran "The Hermey" Friel and her whole misfit clan.