‘Twas the night before Christmas…

‘Twas the night before Christmas, and all through the house, not a creature was stirring, except for me and my dog when she makes sounds because she’s having a dream.

What am I doing up so late you ask? That goes without saying. I’m working out an internal conflict.

To say my Christmas spirit has been lacking would be an understatement.

It’s been three years since I spoke with my mother, and this is the third Christmas without her. The past two were bearable thanks to my grandparents and family in St. Louis. This year, however, for a variety of reasons, I didn’t make it there.

Don’t get me wrong. I had places to go. But there’s something about having a tradition with your own family, even if it drives you nuts. Even if the holiday is filled with stress, frustration, and crying, somehow that feels more familiar than inserting myself into other people’s healthy, loving, and mild holiday traditions.

The worst part was, my sister and I aren’t together. She and I are extremely close, not only in that sisterly way, but in that ‘we survived our childhood together’ way, and yet she is not here.

All that being said, I’m sure you can see why I was having difficulty finding the Christmas cheer. I was happy for the holiday, but that special feeling, I couldn’t find.

So I found myself on the couch at 1am, watching the quality equivalent of a Lifetime Christmas movie, and looking around at the house I’d wish I had decorated.

What would we do tomorrow? First thing when we wake? What will we have for breakfast?

Then it dawned on me…

I can make it whatever I want it to be.

One of the many burdens lifted from my soul when my mom and I split was that of obligation. Now it has extended itself. Three years later, I am not obligated to any holiday activities whatsoever. But what I hadn’t thought to take advantage of yet, was creating my own!

It’s only been 22 minutes since this revelation, and it’s also after 1am -technically Christmas morning so who knows if walmart is open – I don’t know what kind of magic I will make happen before the house is awake. I do know one thing: whatever happens tomorrow will be by choice, not for obligation or default.

I’ll be an active participant in making memories, with this Ghost of Christmas past laid to rest, as my present, for the future.

Have a bright and beautiful day tomorrow (today) and may the love you feel keep you warm all winter long!

Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night.

P.s. I’m thinking cinnamon rolls for breakfast and stockings!!!

16 thoughts on “‘Twas the night before Christmas…

  1. God Bless. Have a great day today and make everyday yours going forward.

    P.S. Fewer than we may think have that picture perfect Family Christmas event depicted in Hollywood. Life can be messy, but we; especially the new WE decide how we will live our lives going forward.
    Merry Christmas.
    with Love and best wishes
    Rick

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  2. Ho, Ho, Ho! Put a little bit of “fun” in dysFUNctional. Like cinnamon rolls IN the stockings. Catch the spirit and keep keep it burning. Many blessings to you and yours… today and into the New Year! You are loved.

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  3. I can relate to your story as my situation is similar. However, I can tell you that as the years pass we have made our own Christmas traditions and they all include one very special ingredient. The MUST be stress-free! We have taken the panic and hurriedness out of the holidays. Our celebrations are simple with good food, fun, and laughter. It is difficult to break those old patterns even if they were, as you have stated, they were full of frustration and crying but I can promise you that a new holiday blueprint is worth the effort and the holidays can become something positive to look forward to. Enjoy creating your new traditions, what ever you will them to be.

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    1. Thanks so much for this. Never did I dream there were other people who also felt the desire to make a new holiday blueprint. It’s empowering! I’m stockpiling ideas already. Thank you so much for sharing that you can relate. And I LOVE the idea of making them mandatory stress free. That sounds beautiful.

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    1. Yes!!! I am! Thank you so much for sharing that you can see that. I need to remind myself…I’m getting better and better every day. Thank you so much. God bless you!

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