Sunday, December 18, 2011

What Christmas Feels Like

I’m not sure if it feels like Christmas or not. A couple of days ago, I decided it didn’t feel like Christmas at all, and I was okay with that. On the contrary, I thought to myself, perhaps I never want to feel Christmas again. Followed by the thought that everyone is going to think that totally morose and view it as not moving on.

But, maybe I just don’t want to feel Christmas the way it’s felt since 2007. I want to feel Christmas the way it was in 2006 and before that. I’m speaking of course, about losing my father at holiday time, Christmas 2007/New Year 2008. Anyone that’s experienced grief knows the holidays are hard. But they’re even harder when that’s the time of year your loved one passed. And that’s the foundation of my Grinch attitude, but I try to tone it down.

Last night I went to a holiday potluck. Almost everything had cheese. My friends with the vegetarian, non-dairy Thai food saved me on that one. It didn’t really feel like Christmas, but it was social, it was merry, and I guess that’s as close as it gets when you’re an expat away from your family and culture. It was nice.

On the walk and motorbike taxi ride home, I marveled at the ridiculous Christmas lights, fake reindeer and sleighs and what not decked out for the shopping megaplexes. While that looks neat, it doesn’t feel like Christmas. Just commercialism. But, I suppose we don’t do a good job separating the two.

I received a Christmas card today from a good friend.
And it felt a little more like Christmas.
My Uncle Steve told me he is sending Uncle Jim’s famous Christmas cookies and cards for Christmas and my birthday. Family. Christmas.

I have a pile of un-mailed gifts sitting on a stool in my apartment. When I realized it would take two months to ship them; I figured well, I’m already late I’ll get to it after some other year end business. And it won’t matter that it won’t be there in time for Christmas, because the sentiment is what really makes it so.

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