Grumpy Grinch!

16 Dec

So this is more of a “therapeutic” post for me, but I am going to rant anyways!

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Christmas is not a good time of year for me, there are many different reasons why. The list is long, but I can say without any doubt that it mostly has to do with my estranged family. When I was growing up, this time of year was particularly stressful for my family. Mostly the financial aspect of things, but we ALL felt the stress of that.

When I left home at 15, I started feeling uneasy about celebrating holidays with other families. Even with close friends, I had always felt out-of-place if I happened to go to a family holiday dinner.

This has carried into my adult years; and now, in particular, Christmas…you generally find me begging to take a shift at my part-time job or let’s be honest…drinking.

Now that I have my own family, people are telling me that for Parkers sake I need to get over my holiday blues and start my own family traditions. I couldn’t agree more. However, It is not as easy as people try to make it sound.

The first 2 years of Parker life was a breeze! He had NO clue what was going on! Adam was in charge of the Christmas tree, setting up and tearing down. He also was in charge of buying Parker gifts ( I don’t buy gifts for people anymore).

Wait! Before I go on, let me explain.. I don’t buy gifts because our world is so materialistic these days…I help people the best I can with babysitting, cleaning, painting, moving and whatever else they may need help with. My friends KNOW that they can count on me for stuff like this. I am also very appreciative of any help we receive in return, but I don’t expect it. We plan on, when Parker is of age, volunteering for charities during the Christmas season as a way to give back to the community.

This year Parker is 3, and he is absolutely excited about Christmas. He is singing Jingle Bells and blabbing on and on about Christmas, Rudolf, wreaths, santa and what have you. I am trying my hardest to be excited with him! I “helped” decorate the tree for a bit, bought stockings, even had him pick out some presents for a friend of his.

Toy shopping for him has been a nightmare, I just am so clueless. I think I have everything, but I felt lost in the big box stores, aimlessly flying around like I don’t know what he likes!

With all this effort I am still worried that the morning of, I will be just as blah as I normally am.

Does anyone have any advice to help a girl out?? Anyone else go through something similar??

 

 

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13 Responses to “Grumpy Grinch!”

  1. drumsdw98 December 17, 2012 at 12:58 am #

    Me and my spouse have decided to not to participate in the mainstream materialism of the holidays. This year we are not buying any gifts, we are making small gifts such as knitting scarves, making cookies ect. It’s comforting to hear other people struggle with the holidays as well.

    • Jenny December 17, 2012 at 6:47 pm #

      That is so nice to hear that you are making gifts for one another!!! I bet your Christmas will be that much more special =) Thank you for your comment!

  2. runoffwriter December 17, 2012 at 3:03 am #

    While I love Christmas, I can relate to the stress of knowing what to buy a little person!! Even one as close as your own son…especially when he’s still little….it’s hard! And you’re also dealing with all those other tough emotions you spoke of when you go out shopping for him at this time of year.

    So… with that in mind, when you go into the store, take a deep breath, and tell yourself you will do the best you can and that will be enough. Really what will matter most to him is that you spend time enjoying the gifts with him. Relax and ease up on yourself. Tell yourself it’s ok to not take it all too seriously and just have fun with it. If you’re really unsure of what to get (I know that feeling), bring him with you! Go for a scouting run and see what draws him, then go pick it up later alone:)

    You’ll be fine…trust yourself!

    • Jenny December 17, 2012 at 6:58 pm #

      I am happy to hear that you have had similar issues buying for kids!
      I did something along the same lines, I grabbed the Toys R Us flyer and had him go through it with me lol. He picked out some lego that he liked (but it was for 6years and up). I did not get him that lego, I went for trains and cars (he constantly loses his cars because he takes them everywhere!). I just have to pick him up some clothes…hahaha, because its the only thing I am sure he will need soon! Thanks so much for commenting!!!

  3. ommarathonlawyer December 17, 2012 at 4:12 am #

    Holidays really do not need to be about material things. It is important for families to have traditions of their own, even if that involves doing or agreeing to perform acts of kindness for others. One of my cousins in Vancouver has resorted to hosting a cookout with his wife and inviting people who cannot afford food to their celebration. These things make us all thankful for what we do have!

    • Jenny December 17, 2012 at 7:09 pm #

      Wow!!! Your cousin is totally inspiring!! What a fabulous idea!
      I can not wait until Parker is old enough to help with those sorts of things! I still want the “magic” of Santa because I don’t want him to feel like he is missing out on something. However when it comes to gifts from us, it will be one thing that is special and then we will help out in the community on Christmas day or volunteer to wrap gifts for the Santa’s Anonymous organization!

  4. Mind Margins/Run Nature December 17, 2012 at 4:59 pm #

    Christmas was never a happy time for my family when I was growing up. As an adult, I had to fight against all those old feelings at Christmastime, especially when my own children were small. Now that they’re grown we have chosen not to exchange gifts this year and are trying to focus less on the materialistic aspect of Christmas. It is still a sad time of year for me, but I have learned to not focus on the past and work on building happier memories of Christmastime.

    • Jenny December 17, 2012 at 7:25 pm #

      THANK YOU! THANK YOU! THANK YOU!
      I hope that it will get easier for me to focus on the present rather than the past as we move along. It is so unfortunate that people like us who grow up with family issues are so affected and carry those negative feelings forward. I wish it was just as easy as forgive and forget!
      I am very glad to hear that you have been able to move forward with this! Knowing that there are still feelings there is what truly makes us human.

      • Mind Margins/Run Nature December 17, 2012 at 10:40 pm #

        Some years are harder than others, but it does help having your own children and making new memories.

  5. sushismith December 18, 2012 at 3:13 am #

    I feel like the Grinch of my family too, no one ever seems to want to do anything for Christmas so I put it in high gear and start off every season completely motivated. I set up and decorate the tree, wrap gifts, buy supplies, bake things, etc. But I always get rapidly upset that no one else cares, appreciates, or wants to help with their own effort. By Christmas time I usually don’t care anymore and am totally over it. I think that consumerism and media have made the holidays a nightmare because it is really hard to be content with the little things anymore. I like the plans you have about volunteering and giving back to the community. That sounds a lot more fulfilling.

    • Jenny December 18, 2012 at 3:38 am #

      Oh Susan, I am sorry to hear that you feel no one cares! You have to do this stuff for yourself then, if you enjoy having a decorated house and giving presents then keep on keeping on! Don’t let others ruin your Christmas spirit!!
      Before Parker, Adam and I one year had made up about 10 presents for the homeless in our city. Just filling the boxes with things like a toothbrush, toothpaste, a Timmy’s gift card, socks and homemade cookies. Just very simple, but the act of walking around downtown and giving these presents out was amazing. Every single person was so appreciative of the present. We did it over the holiday season, and it was an awesome experience!
      Good luck with everything this year! I hope you have a little joy left to enjoy Christmas day!

  6. dormuth December 18, 2012 at 10:25 am #

    I have always felt that buying and stressing about gifts turns Christmas miserable. It is about something completely different.
    No gift can be measured to a few days with my family in Christmas.

    • Jenny December 19, 2012 at 5:54 pm #

      That is wonderful to hear that you really treasure spending time with your family, this is what Christmas should be about! =) Thanks for commenting!!! Merry Christmas!

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