Posted by Pattie on 12/19/2009 08:42:00 PM

Okay, you might as well know. I really hate this time of the year. I guess if I had more children in my life or if I was wealthier, I might enjoy it more, but for the most part, I feel myself gritting my teeth and white knuckling it until December 26. So if you love Christmas and don't want to be brought down, don't read this.

I don't like the commercialism. The past 10 years or so, I just feel the weight of a consumption-based society, constantly selling gadgetry that seems pointless. Every talk show turns into the not-so veiled commercials. Everyone seems hellbent on outdoing each other in consumption. I find myself becoming more cynical and then being surprised that I'm not cynical enough.

The particular joys of the season are often drowned out by the guilt trips about food-- Americans can't discuss a pastry or cookie or candy without homage to calorie counting or diet-think. Recipes are touted as "just as tasty but healthy" because we've substituted wholesome ingredients with fake stuff that makes everything taste like cardboard. Why can't we just enjoy a good meal without all the analysis?

Lately, Santa has been depicted as slimmer and jokes about his fatness are no longer taboo. So on top of the food stuff, I find myself bombarded with fat hatred at a time when being fat and happy used to be the pleasure of the season. And of course, right around the corner is January, the fat hateful month of the year.

My favorite thing used to be the music. I can remember as a kid starting to practice Christmas carols in September. I often was in multiple shows and concerts as a chorus or choir member. But even the music seems so drained of life these days because you can't get away from the muzak, fast food versions at all. Everywhere you go it drones on to the point where I just want it to stop. Too much of a good thing ruins it.

I find myself wishing for snow. The mountains near here have some and we've had cooler than usual weather which I've enjoyed. But I can remember Christmas of 2000 in Victoria with the snow on the mountains and this beautiful lodge/restaurant called Malahat Mountain Inn that was unspeakably gorgeous in the winter time and I wish I could be there.

Vegas is nice in the Winter but not really winter-nice. More like fall weather than winter.

I miss people during the holidays -- my son, my father,others who have touched my life and then moved on.

The other thing that doesn't help is that I'm usually broke this time of year due the way I get paid and the nature of our business. So at the exact moment that money is the tightest, it feels like everyone else has more. I can only imagine how much it hurts to watch such wealth for people who are really poor. There is a kind of vulgarity to wealth that can be a real turn-off when you can't participate.

The thing is, I'm not sure I'd want to participate if I could. It all seems so staged and empty.

Sour grapes?

Maybe, but the truth is I feel like Christmas is just one great big reminder of all that I find wrong with this culture with little stress on the good stuff.

I'm aware this is not wholly true.

I know people give more during this season and there are those out there who have a lot who give a lot away at this time, often quite selflessly. I was the recipient of such generosity this year and I feel extremely grateful.

I just wish things were different and I guess that's the bottomline.

7 more days to December 26.

4 comments:

CTJen said...

You're not the only one who has a hard time this time of year. My mother has always detested winter in general (she has SAD) and Christmas in particular.

Hang in there, it's almost over. ((HUGS))

Scattered Marbles said...

I totally get this! I had been dreading christmas all year just because my family has been kind of hard to deal with for me. I am a full time student and work as much as I can around that for a small company as their graphic designer so money is tight and I struggle with the wish to get good meaningful presents that they won't look down upon. One hard thing is that two of my siblings families make good money while my income is not stable and my oldest sister doesn't make a very good income. So they share the lists between them, and we are the others... I had to log into my parents email account to actually see the lists and then it was like they had written me off and I come to find out presents that i had been investing much time, energy, and money into and then come to find that they had gone and bought the same thing but of course theirs is better and more expensive so now I have to scramble for gifts that I thought were covered and that I was very excited for.

I think they are trying to be thoughtful and caring... I really don't think they mean it badly.. but I feel like the unworthy one who no one has any hope for... and that kind of sucks lol. So yeah christmas.. bleh

Proud FA said...

A big part of our efforts to normalize obesity is to promote guilt free eating.

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