I am a teacher and aspiring writer, and keep a blog to keep up with writing and document the daily moments that make up my life. Working with my students & travel writing are my biggest passions. People, art, food, wine/spirits, and culture are other writing interests. Thanks for coming by!

Monday, December 26, 2011

The Ups and Downs of Christmas

Christmas IS a wonderful time of year. Time with loved ones, sparkling lights, holiday cheer, parties....but for many, it is also a difficult time of year.
We went to a nice holiday party that my husband's company put on, and also got to spend a really nice evening with friends. We also got to see both of our families to celebrate Christmas on Christmas Eve and Christmas day. Our time spent with friends and family was undoubtedly the highlight of our holidays season this year.
However, my grandpa also passed away about a month ago, and it was a strange and sad realization that I'll never spend another Christmas with him. Also, a week or so before Christmas, a friend's husband passed away of cancer at only 43 years of age after a valiant but brief battle. He should have lived twice as long. They hadn't even had to time to start their family, which was their biggest dream.
Another friend lost a dog. Actually two of them did. One dog died of old age and the other one, I can't even go into it, but the whole situation broke my heart.
I am not trying to focus on the negative here, but I'd be lying to say that none of this affected my Christmas experience this year. A lot of people also get lonely at Christmas. I wasn't lonely, as I have my wonderful husband and dog, but I definitely felt waves of sadness for the other reasons I mentioned.
For some reason, everything is kind of magnified at Christmas. Maybe because the stakes - and expectations - are really high for things to be really special. And life just isn't always perfect. In fact it rarely is, especially on occasions when we really badly want it to be, like at Christmas.
Losing expectations is part of it I'm sure, which is a tough thing to do, but helpful probably.
Being grateful for what is, whether it matches how you want it to be or not, is probably another helpful coping mechanism. And realizing that life is never perfect, even at the holidays, is probably a good thing to remember too.
But since I'm no good really at making these changes despite good intentions, maybe I'll just spend my holidays somewhere else next year, away from the fray. What? The tropics you say? They're calling my name.


bun2bon said...

I'm sorry to hear about your grandpa. Prayers to you and your family.

I TOTALLY have the same reaction at Christmas time! It's the worst on Christmas Eve, although this year, I had the best Christmas Eve and Christmas Day ever. Still, I agree that being thankful, and giving to those in need are the best ways to cope.

(...go tropics!)

Yeni said...

Thanks Bonnie, you are so sweet.