Ever feel the need to just punch something? Like yourself? In the head?
This is life. This is what we signed up for. Only we didn’t. Not at all. We didn’t sign up for shit. But shit is what we’re given, and that’s what we have to deal with. Merry fuckin’ Christmas.
Sorry. Just bitter, stressed, aggravated, and feeling the need for a vacation from my vacation.
Going skiing tomorrow. That should help. Drinking now, which doesn’t help, but I hold onto the misplaced hope that it will. And isn’t this the season of hope?
What does it mean to be happy? A lot of the time I feel like I am, generally. But then comes the holidays, where I get to get the hell out of Phoenix and up to Colorado, which I love, and see family, whom I love, and see my son, whom I love and see precious little of these days.
And it all just drives me nuts and stresses me out and makes me miserable and drives me to seasonal affect depression, which is just one of many types of depression I get to fight off throughout the year. Fun, right?
So, yeah. Christmas. Can’t wait for it every year, can’t wait for it to be over before it arrives. I can’t remember the last time I really felt the “Christmas spirit”. I used to every year as a kid, I know. I’d wrangle my siblings and my cousins into a frenzy of excitement for Christmas dinner and snowball fights and setting traps for Santa and tearing into the cornucopia beneath the tree on the morning of the 25th. Something about being an adult, though…
Maybe it’s the general let-down of the day. When you’re a kid, getting gifts is a huge deal. When you’re a grown-up, though, if you actually need or want something, you tend to save up and buy it yourself. If it’s not something you can afford, chances are those giving you gifts can’t afford it, either. So Santa’s a bit of a bummer for us old folks.
It’s still exciting to see the excitement on the kids’ faces. They get geeked out about everything, Xmas still holds magic for them, and it’s almost infectious. Seeing my son unwrap his new light saber, I almost feel as I did as a kid, freaking out over a new book or skis or whatever else my parents chose to spoil me with that year. It was a beautiful time.
Now I want to relax. I want to sit back with a book, sip wine and watch the snowfall, with the Christmas tree lights glimmering and Bing Crosby crooning on the stereo. More than that, though – I want it to feel like it felt in Christmases back when. I want to get that warm Dickensian holiday spirit flowing through me, that feeling of wonder and joy and excitement that the world couldn’t be more perfect, but it was going to be, anyway.
That’s what I want from Christmas. But of course, that’s what it no longer gives me. It’s a Hallmark feeling, something we adults have to fake every year so our children can feel some semblance of the real thing. And gods know, I try. I really do. Hell, I have Christmas music playing on Pandora right now. I’m wearing a Jack Skellington t-shirt. See how I get into the spirit?
If only it felt genuine. If only anything did.
As I said, ignore me. Go drink your eggnog. Look at the pretty lights. Love your life, and love the season. It’s worth it, I’ve heard. If you’re religious, you have that to hold onto, to light your candles for the Christ child or the Festival of Lights or whatever they do for Kwanzaa or the other holidays that happen to fall right around the Solstice. (I’m prone to burning a Yule log and pouring a libation to Odin the All-father myself, but to each her own.)
My sister’s house, where Tyrion and I are staying for the nonce, now has live rabbits. So that’s something.
Happy Boxing Day then, my friend. May it be ever so merry. May you have a bit of that feeling of true happiness that eludes me and (I assume) so many others. Ready yourself for a new year and new adventures.
If I die skiing tomorrow, at least I’ll go happy. It’s nice to have those brief moments of bliss.
If you’d like to indulge in something more cheerful than this pessimistic holiday rant, here’s me attempting to tell the tale of St. Nick to a gang of rowdy children on Christmas Eve. Enjoy!