It's no secret that Christmas is not one of my favorite holidays. The quote above is how I began one of my earliest pieces for the old Associated Content way back in December 2007. Why I Hate Christmas was my first diatribe against the most commercialized of all holidays and my mind hasn't changed much over the last five years. In fact, just last year I posted a redux of that original article right here on John's World and here we go again one more time, only this year is a little different.
Yes, I still detest the whole mess that Christmas has become in our consumer oriented, market-driven world. I mean c'mon, "It's Jesus' birthday, lets go shopping!" Really? What does Jesus have to do with the newest video game or the most recent high tech HDTV? Yeah, the ridiculousness of the whole thing pretty much disgusts me, but this year the diminishment of Christmas as a celebratory holiday in my mind comes from a whole different place. This time the disdain is more personal.
Two years ago I had the absolute worst Christmas of my life. I had been broken up with via email on Christmas Eve and that sent me into a tailspin like I'd never experienced before. I spent that holiday at home, alone and depressed. It was horrible! This year I find myself in a similar situation, but I plan on facing it head on, rather than wallowing in misery.
Familial issues are at the top of my list of things to dread this Christmas, and for the second time in three years, and only the second time in my life, I will be spending the holiday without my family. I don't want to get too personal here...perhaps another time...but my mantra this school year has been, "Is it me? (Or is it everyone else?)" Well that question fits with my family, as well, and I've come to the conclusion that it is not me, but everyone else who's gone off the deep end. (Check out True Blood Don't Mean a Thing)
My only sanity comes from the fact that there are many others who've stepped in and made offers of including me in their holiday plans. I've had my choice of several holiday gatherings to include myself in, and just this morning I have decided on two of the most enticing, where I'll be with people who want to share their holiday with me. I want to thank everyone else, though, for asking me!
I'm beginning to see a little into my future, where every year will be something new and different. I don't have children of my own, and I've always known that not having any signifies lonesome holidays for me as I grow older. Mom has always been the glue that held us together as a family, and when the day comes that she is gone, I'm afraid that family gatherings will forever become a thing of the past.
I don't mean to be sappy, really I don't. I think the holidays bring out the unhappiness in a lot of people. At a time that is supposed to be shared with loved ones and thankfulness, I think that it is the lonely who seem to dislike it the most, and I guess I'm a little lonely. At least there's a New Year coming...