December 8, 2011

Grinch…who me?

I wrote a piece last week about christmas and the space between the saccharine display for peace and togetherness versus the stark reality that christmas sux for a lot of people.

People say that when you have kids the joy of christmas returns from that place where you shelved it at 13 or 14…the look on your kids face on christmas morning, the christmas carols and the food…why is there so much food?

Im the first to say that Christmas is my least favourite time of year for a few reasons. I find christmas carols really sad, I tear up whenever I hear them and not in a happy nostalgic way but more a sad and depressing way. I made this comment on my personal FB page a few days ago while on my way to the Opera House for the Baby proms…most people admitted that they too had a bit of a quiet sob when carols were playing but one person said they chose to view christmas as time to be grateful for what they have. A way of looking forward rather than back.

Im not sure what gets me when I hear the beginning of a christmas song. I remember them playing as a kid on Christmas while we waited for the extended family to turn up (its always hard not to eat what you’ve prepared in that space between being ready and when people arrive…). It also reminds me of my time at school – whilst Im not a practising Catholic nowadays I guess christmas at school was a little more balanced in reminding us with that poetic tagline that ‘Jesus is the reason for the season’. Christmas is also a reminder of things Id prefer to forget but the slowness of the songs, the thoughts of being together and those innappropriate sobbing hormones you get as a woman make me a little bit tragic at this time.

In thinking of all of this I had a chat with Graham Long at Wayside Chapel and he told me not to despair. He told me that lots of people feel like this and then seemed a little perplexed when I asked him if I could call him everyday so he could keep me focussed on holding it together.

So thats what Im going to do. Im going to sing those darn songs, stiffle the sobs, hold my babies tight and look ahead…looking back reeks havoc on my hastily applied mascara.

So what about you – any anonymous christmas carol sobbers out there??

Join the conversation! 6 Comments

  1. Thanks for the post Sarah. I think you can be grateful for what you have, look forward to the future as well as reflect on the past and shed a tear or two over a few carols. Some carols can take me right back to Christmases of yester year in a happy, nostalgic way, but there is also a loss of those times and some of the people that went with it that made it so special and happy. I think carols provide that space of quiet reflection and there’s a gratefulness in that as well as room for a big deep breath to keep going and create some new happy Christmas times. To the naysayer – just let people weep when they are weeping.

    See you for a good cry at the DJs choir!

  2. I never used to feel sad at hearing Christmas carols. They were joyful to me, but now after having lost both my parents, carols remind me of Christmases past and of how much I miss my folks.

    I’m listening to Christmas carols right now, and actually they’re not making me sad, because my eight-year-old asked me to put the music on. I realise that I’m helping to make the fond memories of his childhood by playing this music and that brings back the joy.

    • Thanks for stopping over Shelly. I think as much as Christmas can be joyful it does remind us what is lost rather than what is present. The trick is working out how to balance the looking to the past with looking to the future. I agree, music can replace some of the joy thats lost – have a lovely holiday season x

  3. I guess it depends on what significance you place on Christmas.

    I adored Christmas – like with a scary passion – up until last year. Now I am dreading it and have my emergency valium so I don’t lose my shit completely. This is because what Christmas means to me has been destroyed and now it is a whole month to suffer through with a huge fake smile on my face.

    • Ive been chatting with a friend offline (like in the real world!!) about this. We think that if someone could market a pill for the christmas non-likers that allows you to skip the whole of the season so that you wake a fresh on Jan 1 that we would be millionaires. People keep saying that its only one day but the lead up, the relentless reminders and the memories you attach to the day make it hard to just suck it up sometimes.
      Hope your face doesnt ache too much from the fake smile…x


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


Loss, Parenting