I’m glad it’s not just me.
This morning the family left again and tonight I caught up on the interwebs. My favorite blogs? All posted last on December 22. (Of course, my last was December 19, but Sunday is usually my day off and then Monday was crazyish. Then my routine went to hell with all the rest of us unfashionable types who still celebrate Christmas.)
Amusingly enough, even a Jewish blogger I like, who last posted to the ‘net a reminder of the things she hates to hear during Christmas, last blogged on December 22.
When I was a little girl, I totally bought the Christmas schtick.
Of course, I also believed in fairies and unicorns and, really, on certain levels, still do. Look, here I am writing novels about them. I believed that Christmas was a magical night. A night of peace an joy. It’s a sign of my naivete, perhaps, or just of my blissful upbringing, that I was thoroughly and completely shocked to discover that, not only did not everyone in the world experience peace and joy on Christmas, that even bad things could happen on that day.
And, no, it had nothing to do with Jesus for me. Really.
My Jewish blogger says that it’s nonsense to say that Christmas isn’t a religious holiday, because only Christians celebrate it.
Full disclosure: Yes, I come from an Irish Catholic family. I consider this part of my racial heritage. I know those ideas shape me. I also know that my ancestry is full of pagan witches who reconfigured their celebrations to fall under the Church’s radar. I know what I believe in, my spiritual convictions and my private rituals. I’ve studied Catholicism. Along with Judaism, Islam, Taoism, many and varied other philosophies, mystical and shamanic practices.
Please: do not tell me what my religion is.
Yes. I celebrate Christmas. Unfashionably, I love Christmas. I’m sorry that so many people feel it’s foisted upon them. That it’s not their holiday. That it’s materialistic, shallow, meaningless, creates unrealizable expectations and grinds down everyone who can’t possibly meet some ideal.
I hate that the Christmas season becomes that to anyone.
I suppose, in my idealistic heart, in that place that still has room for unicorns and fairies, that I wish there could be one night that we all celebrate joy and love.
I know — it sounds stupid.
That’s what it is for me. For the days around Christmas, I drop it all. I decorate. Anything that’s bright and sparkly is good. I make food for feasting. I buy gifts for the people I love. For me, it’s all about finding something special for them. Something to show I know who they are and what they enjoy.
This year, it was all about the table. Laurie and I spotted the concept in Princeton; I took a photo; she sent me some of the basics. The table was truly beautiful.
If I could make it beautiful for everyone, I would.
I know I can’t.
All I ask? Just let me love it a little longer.