Christmas. Hard to believe that it is a day away. I just got back from Mexico late last night so there has been no real build up for me. Spent a week drinking margaritas on a beach and now we are a day away. I used to get hung up on Christmas. Ohmygawd the drama! I think that starts when you are a kid. If you had a great childhood at Christmas, your adult time matched it. If you had stress as a kid, that matched it, too. I had both so it got a bit ‘sliding doors’ for me later. I found a way that works for me: expect nothing, make it another day, and don’t freak on my family.
I used to try and match the tv commercials: do up a tree, get everybody tons of useless stuff, dress up the cat and put these massive expectations on the holidays. I learned that THAT was my foible. The ‘expectation’. I thought if the day matched the movies and all the shit that the media spewed out there, everything would be perfect. Then when it wasn’t, I would blame myself, or my mum, or my dad, or the weather, or the wine, etc…
In my 44 years I have learned that Christmas is a day. A week. A time in space. The sun comes up it goes down. When you put this pressure on it to be ‘the best EVER’ you will always let yourself down. Perfect doesn’t exist. Moments exist. Often the fun and fulfilling ones come along when you least expect it and that is because you didn’t cram it with pressure and expectation.
Ever notice that the first time you did something was the best? Me and my buddies used to do this drunken-river-rafting trip every year. It was always fun but never as fun as the first year. Why? Because we had no expectations yet. My first trip to Mexico was the best ever. It’s never been matched. Why? Same reason. They say (someone does) that ‘expectation is the killer of all’. I get that. If you can live in the moment of things and just go with it, let it flow organically, you’ll be way better off. I used to expect my family to be perfect. They aren’t. Oh god, trust me, they are anything but, but if I look at the 25th as breaky at my mum’s with my hungover brother as a nice day instead of a perfect day, all is well.
This year, I am doing breaky downtown with my buddy Pam. Due to some weird circumstances, we are both without family on the 25th, and we are both cool with it (actually, a little thrilled, to be honest). We are doing brunch, with some expensive champagne, then a movie. Maybe The Hobbit. Maybe Les Miserables. And we are thrilled about our plans. Movie theatres are full of people like us on Christmas day: enjoying just another day without some weird pressure to hang with our dysfunctional families (and trust me babe, they are ALL dysfunctional in some way).
Here’s my point (and there always is one, right? ;)): no matter what you do this week or on the 25th, let it be what it is. Family driving you nuts? It’s ok. Yer not alone. Ha. Not by a long shot. Not having the perfect Mariah Carey Christmas? Then let go of your expectation and just dig the moment. Need a break from yer parents? Go to a movie and let go of the guilt. It’s just another day. Live in the moment and know that whatever you are feeling is fine and somewhere, someone is feeling exactly the same way. Ditto for New Years Eve. Even MORE so.
You can also leave me a message here. I’ll check in.
Merry Christmas gang. May 2013 be a wonderful year for us all.