Saturday, December 24, 2011

Christmas Eve Confession

I don't like the holidays.

There.... I said it. I don't like the holidays.

Don't get me wrong - I love creating memories for my family.  I cherish the time we spend together.  Our traditions of cookie baking, bingo playing, scalloped potato making, stair stockings, and Christmas PJs warm my heart to no end.  It brings me great joy to see that they are experiencing traditions - some carried on from my family and some we created new, that hopefully they will carry on to their families.  When I hear them talk about the holidays as they are approaching, I know I have done well as the conversation is centered around the fun but also the Faith that is a part of our holiday story.

If everything is so perfect, and I feel that I have done good, then why don't I like the  holidays?

As joyful as it is for me to see my children experiencing Christmas and learning tradition to carry on through the generations, there is also a part of me that experiences great sadness.  There is a part of me that knows that the joy of the season is temporary and will soon come to an end.  Like many moms who make the holiday experience for their families, I give  my all to creating a celebration that my children will remember.  Though I would never change it, I am tired. Like many other moms, I have moved from my family with my spouse and become the matriarch of the holiday. I find myself  "winging" it and hoping I am dong a good job, while at the same time longing for being  under the safety and celebration of my own family back home. As each season passes, I have my joy increased, but my sadness as well. With the passing of each holiday, I know I am one step closer to having my daughters step out and build their own traditions with their own families.

So What do I do about it?

I hang on to the joy.  I hold tight to each memory we are making.  I cherish the fun and laughter. I know that I am passing on Faith and the meaning of Christmas. I know that even though I don't necessarily like the "holidays" I love the moments, the laughter, the smiles, the anticipation.  I remember that each effort put out becomes a part of my legacy.  I find solace that in my old age as I look upon my family, though I may not have liked the holidays, I loved my family enough to be a memory and tradition maker for my dear daughters. I will love being a part of their holiday traditions with their families.

To any of the moms (or dads) reading this that feel the same way, you are not alone. Even if you are tired in the entirety of the holidays, find joy and happiness and love the moments.  Know that you are dong a good work and building memories for your family. They love you and will cherish you for it.

I wish you a Merry Christmas


  1. Well said. You have respectfully captured that transition time when new families begin to create new memories.

    It is hard to become the new matriarch who is expected to co-ordinate the meals, snacks, traditions and treks to other Christmas homes. Succeed or fail - that is how the new branches to the tree are grown and strengthened

    This is the 36th year I have opened up our boxes of Christmas Decorations. Memories come flooding back to us as we unwrap our 'treasures'. It becomes a reflective time - happy memories of new babies and fond memories of an old generation passing through our lives. Tree decorations that my own children had made at school or a little ornaments gifted to me from students along the way.

    Each time I pack them away I also pack away new memories for next year's surprise opening. Last year our youngest son married and we had a shared Christmas with a new extended family. This year our eldest son introduced us to his girlfriend and her family... and so the story keeps unfolding.

    Listening to our adult children eagerly share 'how we do Christmas' with their spouses and friends we have to stifle a giggle. Amidst the 'ooohs' and 'aaaahs' we (the parents) know that 'new' tradition was a last minute scramble to turn around a potential failure into a family tradition!

    Continue to have fun with the journey. Build strength as you negotiate the hurdles ahead. But above all, look as if you know what you are doing!

    Cheers and thanks for the lovely invite into memory making


  2. Thank you Lesleigh for your beautiful response. As much as I don't like what I feel I am losing as each year passes, I love even more what I am gaining. I am gaining three independent daughters' that are learning what it is to make memories for their families. I would never change a single moment of sharing the holidays with my sweet babies - (I should say young women...). This year the oldest is visiting home from out of state where she moved for her job. It is a strange but also amazing feeling to see them celebrating as adults or near adults. This year I passed on some of the family recipes to them as they watched the prep of our traditional dinner.

    I smiled when I read to "look like you know what you are doing." I will chuckle to myself when my girls are in the spot of having to do the same for their children and families. Then they will know the secret of mom's holiday magic.

    Merry Christmas!


Thank you for taking a moment to leave your thoughts on this post!