Monday, November 27, 2006

Day Twentyseven!

The end is neeeeaaaaaaar.

So, I'm lounging about on the sofa, when i see a commercial for Lowe's hardware store. It suggests that, to make the holidays more bearable, and lessen the complaining and jabs of in-laws, you make some improvements to your house. This made me wonder, why do people put up with behavior like that? In every other normal healthy adult relationship, you do not complain about and disparage someone's home. At least, not to their face.
We're so programmed that the holidays should be spent with family, no matter what, that we put up with things that we shouldn't.
A few semesters ago, I had an assignment for my Psych course that involved a parent interview. It was Easter weekend and I was really not looking forward to it. If not for wanting to see my siblings and grandmother, and the assigned interview, I would have skipped out on the visit. One of my sisters, a Muslim, wasn't there. She later explained that our mother was disappointed that she didn't show, but, Easter isn't a holiday they celebrate, so why should she be expected to join in the festivities?
This was a major, Ah ha, moment for me. (Oh my god, is that an Oprahism?)It was the first moment that I realized that I'm an adult and can decide how I want my family to spend the holidays.
We spent Thanksgiving with extended family, and Christmas Eve will be spent with "Pop-pop", but Christmas day will be all ours. We will remain in pajamas and eat cinnamon rolls, while opening presents. We will, if there is any, play in the snow. We will make lunch together, and watch DVD's. This is what I want my kids to remember, not the travel, stress, and rushing about.
The Christmas I remember, putting on footie pajamas and lip syncing to The Carpenter's, no longer exists at my Grandmother's house. There have been too many additions to the family, too many changes, to allow those things to continue.
Don't get me wrong, I love visiting with my siblings and my grandmother(and one of my aunts and a handful of cousins and my niece and nephews) but, I don't want to do it out of obligation. And, I don't want to put up with the negativity that seems to seep out of certain relatives. I talk about running, and hear a diatribe about the damage to ones knees. I talk about no longer eating dairy, and hear about how I'm surely ruining my bone density. I marvel at the warm weather, and hear that it's only acting as an incubator for the Flu. Being around that much negativity, is not healthy. If I can, actively lessen it, then why not?
Because everyone else shows up? Because it's expected of me? That's not reason enough.


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