By Doris Deits
The holidays are a time for celebration, gift giving, being thankful and feeling the joy of Christmas Spirit spread like glitter throughout the land!
Oh wait, that’s not reality; it’s just my husband watching the Hallmark channel again. Gag me.
My spouse thinks I’ve become a modern day grinch. I think he may be right. I need an intervention, and quickly.
Yes, holidays are great for the young and optimistic, and of course, the Hallmark channel. But what about the rest of us who no longer get tingles when we see tinsel?
I can totally relate to that little green cartoon Grinch. There is much to be cynical and grumpy about. Why bother with all the fuss and hassle – it’s just one day. But just like when the Grinch’s heart grew 3 times its size, when he heard all the little Who’s in Whoville singing, even though they had nothing, I too have lost sight of what the holidays are really about.
Thankfully, it’s not too late for this Grinch to find redemption. This year, I’m going to kick some holiday booty and take back my happy-joy-joy.
Looking back over the last several decades, I can confidently say that my joyful Christmas spirit rode off into the sunset a long time ago.
When the holidays roll around, I think to myself ‘oh crap, here we go again.’ My sister and I talk about how it all seems so pointless. We struggle to find gifts for people who don’t really need anything, we spend too much money, we eat platters of cookies, pies and all things decadent.
Some people call this the holidays, but I call it a recipe for a sense of failure and a fast ten pounds.
Then there’s the ‘Spirit of Giving.’ That joyful spirit robo calls me six times a day on my cell phone. I can’t look the bell ringer in the eye if I don’t put money in the red bucket. And the ghost of Easter Seals begins its merciless phone campaign every night when I get home from work.
There’s a lot to be bah-humbug about during the holidays, but there’s good stuff there, too – just like there was in Whoville.
My problem is that I stopped looking for the good stuff.
Like a lot of other people, I started ‘surviving’ the holidays and forgot how to enjoy them. I allowed myself to feel victimized by the routine of work and family, by forcing myself to do things I no longer enjoyed – perhaps never enjoyed.
To get my happy-joy-joy back, I’m changing the game from being a victim to being a creator. I will create my own version of a happy holiday. The challenge is that I’m not sure what that a happy holiday looks like to me at this stage – I’ve been a cynical grinch for a long time.
It seems that I don’t like doing a lot of the things I once found enjoyable. I’m just not the same person anymore. Maybe I really do like musicals, or perhaps I would enjoy meeting some new people at a friend’s open house. Maybe I would just enjoy trying new things, even if they weren’t great.
To be successful, all I have to do is open myself up to trying new things, and be willing to be okay with whatever happens, as I search for my new sense of holiday happy.
I’ll keep things simple, so I can achieve my goals. And I’ll make a list, so I don’t forget.
Here’s my plan. I’m going to say ‘yes’ to hot chocolate and ‘no’ to cookies.
I will say ‘yes’ to one open house, no matter how much I just want to go home and put my feet up.
I will say ‘no’ to the family Christmas dinner without guilt, and ‘yes’ I will lie and say I’m sick.
I will say ‘yes’ to a half day with friends at a sound healing center.
And to top off my 2018 holiday grinch-redemption bonanza, I’m going to look for something ‘surprising’ to do that feeds my soul.
Even if this simple plan doesn’t end up twirling my chakras, at least it will break up my bah-humbug routine. But I’m already feeling a sense of upliftment at having a couple new adventures to try out. And if I’m lucky, I just might get my holiday wish for some genuine Christmas Spirit as 2018 comes to a close. I think I’m gonna like being a creator.