This seasonal foofaraw — feel the peace, joy, and love, goddamnit! — does not lend itself to clear vision. It's easy to think that our inability to make a complete foundational shift during an imposed holiday is our own fault rather than it just being the reality that we are human beings whose existences don't bend around the commercial and religious calendars. It's not our fault, though. It's actually completely unreasonable to demand this of ourselves.
I'm all for reasonableness. I'm all for preserving our full range of emotions. Not a fan of Christmas? Me, either! Does gift giving feel obligatory and excessive to you? Me, too! Do family gatherings have you breaking out the anxiety meds? Of course! Christmas can shine a pretty harsh light into dark corners.
The holidays can be a hard time for some of us, being that it presents us with difficult situations regarding our relationships, finances, and basic constitutions. I'm an introvert who is given to anxiety attacks when buying gifts and who wobbles between peace/love and grief/despair, for instance. I want you to know that it's normal to be who you are, that you're not bad just because you might feel bad, and, if it helps, what's left of this holiday season is brief.
Personally, I'm dreaming of the joy of July to make it through the hard parts, and I'm embracing the love I can when I can. I'm letting myself eat and make merry when it's good, but I'm also letting myself retreat into back rooms to play Scrabble on my iPhone when it's not so good. I am deeply grateful for the love in my life and the peace I've found, but I can't pretend it's all warmth and light, and that's okay.
You and me? We're good. We really are.
From me to all of you who find this season difficult, happier holidays. I got your back.