I hate the holiday season. Don’t get me wrong, I love Christmas and Hanaukkah, I love being with my family and friends, but I hate the way things have gotten so commercialized. I used to work retail for a couple of big box stores, and the Christmas music always started November 1st!!! Hello?!?!? What happened to Thanksgiving? A celebration of bounty and harvest, as well as time to spend with new and old friends. The December holidays are supposed to be the same way. December is also a special time for me, as my birthday is 5 days after Christmas. Okay, used to be a special time.
Maybe I’m getting a little cynical, but I truly am sick and tired of all these people running around trying to impress others by buying them gifts that only fill up the house, and not the spirit. There’s a lot to be said by sharing a bottle of wine with a friend, and sharing your time instead of mailing them a $50 iTunes card. Wait – Wait! I love iTunes! Okay, so maybe you could spend that time shopping for movies and music with that friend. That’s still quality time.
In this ever changing technological wonder of the world, more and more people are “plugged in” to the internet and to their computers/blackberrys/cell phones than sitting down and writing a letter by hand, licking the stamp and actually mailing it. What people don’t realize is that by spending all of our time on the ‘net, we’re only distancing ourselves from one another. We think we’re staying in touch – but we’re not. Yes – we can get in touch faster, which can be a good thing, but now we’re pressured to send our friends and family emails practically every day, and we get scolded if we don’t.
So this holiday season, take time to shut your computer/blackberry/cell phone down and connect with the people that matter the most – and do it in person! If you can’t be with the ones you love – make the point to have a meaningful, maybe lengthy conversation with them on the phone. Long Distance rates aren’t that bad! Don’t ever be afraid to tell your friends and family how much you love them because you may not get another chance.
I lost my mother 3 days after Christmas, and two days before my 18th birthday. There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t wish I had one more day to tell and show my mom how much I love her and how much I miss her, and especially how much I appreciated her. So, not to sound bitter, but I hate these holidays. I hate how the retailers and the sheep that follow them fall into the commercial trap of “things” for everyone for the holidays. Find some way this year to do something creative, or just different! And don’t fall into the trap! Your wallet, family and friends will thank you! 🙂