It’s past midnight in +8 GMT, and it’s quiet all through my house.
Not a creature is stirring (apart from your well-shod author), not even a mouse.
Not even a louse on a mouse.
I was an all-out grinch this year. Much to my mother’s disappointment.
Boney M Christmas Carols, crowded shops and too much stress over one meal.
I worked in retail for 6 years and tomorrow is my first non-retail Boxing Day in as many years. I said to my mother that retail ruined Christmas for me, that the way people become so ‘feral’ in shops took away my enjoyment of the day itself. Christmas became the day off between working 8am-8pm Christmas Eve and working 10am-5pm on Boxing Day. Merry Stress-mas. Ha.
I don’t hate Christmas, I’m just trying to find a new joy in it as I get older, something that draws me back into the excitement of it.
I feel like there is too much of an expectation about how it ‘should be’. My friends and family far and wide, of different backgrounds and budgets have been packing my newsfeed on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter with well wishes and pictures. Aussie Christmases are the best. For ages my family and I did the oven and turkey thing, but it was too much hassle and it can be too hot. Aussie Christmases are not European Christmases are not American, Asian or African Christmases. Some people’s Christmases are full scale meals, others might get a turkey and cranberry toasted sandwich, for some it is a kind word while dressed in a goofy hat.
Not all people can afford big celebrations. But everyone can afford kind words and affection. Materialism (read a book called “AFFLUENZA” it will change your way of thinking.) is a very convoluted way of saying “Namasté” :
I was blessed to receive some very thoughtful presents this year. But this one brought on a revelation:
It is a Doctor Who pillow depicting (old school) Cyber men ( nemeses of the the Doctor) invading London, specifically St Paul’s Cathedral. I am a new Whovian, but I am thoroughly obsessed. I didn’t ask for this, but it said to me that the people who gave it to me knew my soul, knew my loves and hates, knew what I would delight in. And that, my friends, is so beautiful.
Mum asked me if I’d had a good Christmas tonight and if I would hit the shops on Boxing Day and I said, “I loved them mum, all my gifts, and I do not find myself wanting any more than what I have received.”
That is Christmas, for me. Right there.
Straight from the Grinches’ mouth. Not wanting more, but just being happy. Not just one day, but all days of the year.
The joy I got from today was giving presents. I am the kind of person who is always giving in physical and emotional ways to the people I love, I live for the reaction. The smile, the surprise, the tears, the laughter. All of it. I felt, today that other people not only knew my soul ( who else would squeal with delight in receiving a 1.5L Ice tea jug?! This girl!), but I’m getting to know me better as well. And that will be important for me growing to love Christmas in future.
I went to Mass on Christmas Eve and I read this note from the ArchBishop of Perth. It is the most uplifting thing from the Catholic Church I’ve read in a little while, and I thought I would share this with you, darling readers. You don’t have to be ‘Churchy’, but I think the sentiment is beautiful…….
We all have big and small wounds to heal in our lives, but I think one word will be my philosophy for my next year of growth in 2014, which also applies to my newfound attitude towards Christmas:
Christmas doesn’t have to be big or expensive, how you choose to celebrate should not compare to any one else’s. What you do is not inadequate, it is enough.
There is no gift too silly, cheap or expensive. We feel like we could always give more, but our genuine love and respect, our Namasté, is enough.
I have enough things, and I will seek to respect myself and express positivity through my deeds, while accepting my vulnerabilities, I will know in my soul that I am enough. I am adequate. I am fantastic, and will not actively compare my journey to anyone else’s. I am looking forward to healing the ‘wounds’ of my retail past to help me see Christmas with new eyes.
Don’t judge us Grinches, we’re getting there(!)
Even if we don’t wear jingle bell earrings, we can still love Christmas quietly.
Hope you enjoyed reading as much as I enjoyed writing!
Merry Christmas to all in the time zones behind me — don’t forget to tweet me your thoughts and Christmas experiences!!
I remain, your (Grinchy) well-shod author!