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I don’t think I’m that unique when I say that I’ve always really loved Christmas. I love my family’s traditions, I love eating good food, I love days spent in pajamas, and I love giving people presents. I always have and I’m sure 95 percent of people who celebrate Christmas feel much the same, but my real question is, how? How do you actually enjoy the holiday season?
This isn’t addressed at the kiddos. They have every reason to celebrate Christmas and the holiday season. I’m talking to the majority of the people that read this very site. The working adults. I’ve been post-grad for two years now and while last year I thought, “Oh, it’s just because it’s so different from last year,” I can affirmatively say after this year that that is not the case.
I think being an adult with a real job is ruining Christmas for me.
I’ve realized this slowly over the last few weeks honestly; it wasn’t something that just slapped me in the face, it’s been an agonizingly slow and depressing realization that started after Thanksgiving when I went back to work. I woke up that Monday morning and was just not quite as peppy (read: caffeinated) as I usually am. Now I’m not saying I wake up every morning shitting red and green glitter with doves singing me the song of the wild like some Christmas Cinderella, but I genuinely like my job and while I’m not a fan of the usual early wake-up, I really don’t mind going to work on most days. But today there was just a dreary cloud following my every sluggish step. I pretty much shrugged it off because everyone has their days, right?
Wrong. That cloud has slowly gotten bigger and darker ever since. It’s growing right now as I type this. This past Monday when the cloud finally felt like it was starting to pour, I finally realized why I was feeling this way. My brain is in Christmas break mode right now and I am very much so not on Christmas break. In fact, I have actually been quite busy at work lately. It’s slowly sucking away, perhaps not my love for but my enjoyment of the holiday season. I haven’t even been able to listen to Christmas music. I put it on in my office once so far and just couldn’t stomach it because I wanted to be baking cookies and Christmas shopping, not pulling reports and making creative.
Prior to the last two years, I’ve had 20 years of pure Christmas joy for, pretty much most of December; being able to do all the fun Christmas holiday traditions, even if that meant binge-watching Christmas movies all day and making 500 delicious buckeyes with my sisters all day (yeah, we did that on accident one year — sorry, mom). Now, I rush around on the two days I have off a week, usually slightly hungover, trying to accomplish all my usual errands as well as my Christmas errands. It’s so sad that I even call them errands now instead of “traditions.”
I want to enjoy my Christmas traditions and feel like it’s “‘tis the season again.” Is this how it feels now or is this something that will wear off as working the majority of the holiday season becomes my new norm? Someone please advise or I fear I might end up just another holiday office Scrooge. .