Why Holidays, Really, Matter

Here we are, again at the beginning of the Holidays… I can’t help but feel the slight dread for all that awaits. I love the sweets, the sweats, and the snuggles. But ALL of THIS?? Doesn’t it seem a bit overboard? In my contemplation, I tried to think back on why we go through all the pain. The swollen ankles from the shopping, the hot and crowded kitchens, and don’t forget the half/hearted hugs given to and from many. Why? What is the true benefit of it all?

Well-timed therapy.

Lets be honest, regardless of beliefs, we still get time out of the office and away from school. No matter how long I drag my feet about going to Great-Aunt-Rose’s house for the Christmas party, I still get a break from the regular grind and routine. Sure, if it takes a few awkward moments and pained pinched cheeks, I still got out of work early… And THAT, feels like the biggest light at the end of the tunnel when year end hits. Who knows, I might even get to sleep in a bit, I will even gladly accept my pitiful Christmas Bonus. It gives me something to look forward to, while I watch summer slip through my fingers. I don’t care for gifts, I have all that I need. When it comes down to it, all I really want for Christmas…is a nap.

A time for tradition and culture.

Ya know, I don’t love Halloween. Thanksgiving seemed to be more fun in Elementary school. And I no longer believe in Santa Clause. I am finding, for my own sanity, a difference between the Myths and the Traditions. I have no clue if I will teach my children to believe in Santa one day, but you better believe we will have stockings in our house. I still put up lights and a tree every year, and I have no problem with Halloween as long as it’s all in good fun. But there is definitely something to the idea of traditions that warms my heart and brings me the strangest comfort. I am sure it is just a culture thing, but I can’t help it. I love jumping in the leaves with my family. There is nothing better than slippers and hot-coco. And, to this day, I get excited on the Eve of Christmas... Something, deep down inside of me, won’t let me abandon these traditions that I have grown to love.

Bringing Families Together

Most of the time, once a year almost seems like too much when it comes to seeing the family. Life is busy, people are changing, you probably have to bring a dessert, and even if you have to drive to Alberta: at least it’s not at your house. But yet, some of my fondest memories always seem to be at some family function, somewhere, doing something. Usually by the end of the night, we all have side aches and wet eyes from laughing so hard, and it’s almost hard to leave. It helps to re-align my priorities, to where they need to be. We get so drowned out by the chaos of everything around us, to the point where “family time” is like a far distant dream that you once had, yet you have never forgotten it. There is nothing that can fill the soul faster than quality time spent with those that have impacted so greatly your life.

So, in conclusion, I am trying to remember why I dread them so much. I seem to easily forget all the miserable courtesies and awkward encounters. Heck, for this Holiday Season I might just be the host of the Family Christmas Dinner, or offer to take my nieces trick-or-treating. I might even go out on a limb to make the pies for Thanksgiving. All I know is: as bad as the negatives are, the positives are some of the few essential things, that we as people need to be happy. So yes, you can expect me. I will be there in my big ugly sweater, sitting next to Great Aunt Rose.

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