Friday, December 23, 2005

give up Christmas?

After I dressed the tree this year, I thought, "what the hell did I do that for?" It doesn't seem worth it (even though I blogged about it and really do like my tree tradition).

The presents, though, I'm fond of. I think part of it is that in my family, we have pretty much given up doing Birthdays. My husband's family, sure, but if I send something to my sister or my Dad or something, it's because a good idea for a gift happened to come to mind at precisely the right time.

I am beginning to feel like Christmas, for me, is a little like when your house is getting pretty messy, but then you find out guests are coming, so you do the cleaning you should have been doing all along. Christmas says, "okay, ignore them the rest of the year, but at least right now, come up with a way to show that you were thinking of them."

I don't get stuff from any of them, actually. Mom made me take a card for her account, so she could say every year, "we didn't get around to sending anything, but you guys go out to dinner on us, okay?" And that's cool! So I don't have to play the whole reciprocal gift-giving guilt-trip game. But I always send something, wrapped up. No gift cards. Something that shows that I know what's going on in their lives and want to be involved, but can't because I'm far away.

I figure, if I don't know what's going on in their lives, I shouldn't send anything at all. It'd be pointless.

So... will I keep "celebrating" Christmas? Probably. But I don't spend a lot, and if the shopping crowds are too much for me, I don't go. I can always send the present after Christmas, when things have calmed down. Because the commercial aspect sure isn't about Jesus. And the love aspect isn't dependent on a calendar.

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