The thing about Christmas that I have grown to hate is that there is a very large, and getting larger everyday, contingent of people who demand, and belittle people into having a "perfect Merry Christmas" instead of a having a meaningful Christmas experience.
To them, every blasted household in the U.S. goes home on Christmas Eve, where they are warmly welcomed by their parents, brothers and sisters and children - oh my GOD, its always about the children - and they eat well, make fond memories, and if you are to believe Hollywood, they fall in love while Santa watches from afar.
In reality, its a nice thought. Unrealistic, but nice.
In the real world, people have to work through the Christmas Holiday. Whether its plowing snow, unclogging sewers, flagging in planes to the air port or being a cashier at the WaWa, people work, and they work because this horde of true believers run out of cigarettes, get their cars stuck being on the road when they have been told to stay home because weather conditions are bad.
Well it sucks to be you in that car in the ditch, but in the olden days, they traveled to grandmother's house by sleigh, not by Honda Accords with All-Weather (HA!) Tires.
And then there are the personalities. Someone is always detached, some one is always whiney and then there are the children, who have all had enough sugar to power them through the night. Again, it's always about the children.
I feel bad for the people who sit alone, and want desperately to belong to someone. I'm not talking about the people who really see Christmas as a day to be by their selves and look forward to that solitude. No, I'm talking about the ones who want to be wanted, yet have no one even think of them. They say that they want to spend the evening with their cat, or their iguana, but no one wants to be forgotten.
Yet all around them are people so wrapped up in their own worlds and needs that they insist that everyone be happy instead of wanting around them to feel secure and safe and wanted.
So, my challenge to you is to be kind to people this holiday week, and put those around you, especially the invisible people that are inconvenient to your own sense of perfection. Don't just think that giving a homeless person a dollar gets you off the hook. No. Make that person the center of your life for bit of time.
Thank the girl at WaWa for being there when you need a pack of Marlboro, or think that some TicTacs would be nice. Compliment her on that festive pin. Either she thinks it makes her festive, or she hopes it will make you feel festive, but don't be a total tool and throw the money at her and then think "What a total bitch." when she throws the change at you.
Thank the doorman. Yes, tip him, because we all know what can go wrong when we fail to tip the doorman, but thank him genuinely.
And most importantly, if you have family that you are spending Christmas with, even its your mother who drives you crazy, thank your lucky stars that someone cares enough to make you crazy.
Why is Cookie like this?
This is my second Christmas without my mother, and for as much as I would kvetch about her, since she's been gone I am all alone in this world. Yes, I have my adoring husband, a man that I am too lucky to have love me, and make me laugh and take care of me through these dark winter months, but when a parent or a brother or a sister that is all you have left leaves you, you're alone.
So this year, if you are one of those dreaded Christmas People, spend less time on insisting others be happy and merry, which only makes your mania seem reasonable, and be good to those who have no one else.
Your Christmas will be more in line with what is important, one and other, and less about material things, which no one really cares about.