Friday, November 27, 2009

Once upon a Christmas

So now it begins.
The warring of living the lessons the past year has taught us about overspending versus living on the edge with new, more, shinier, way better stuff. Watching the commercials for heart-tugging messages and pretty scenes but closing off my "I want that" trigger when the new car, furniture, computer, jewelry, clothing shows up.
When I was eight months pregnant with Lizzy, it was mid-December and I sold Avon. With a two year old and a four year old (and did I mention being eight months pregnant?), our house wasn't ready for the holidays. I wasn't ready for the holidays. Making deliveries of Avon to my friends was depressing. The houses were decorated, smelled like pine and cinnamon. Lights twinkled, cookies baked, garlands swagged and I sulked. Exhaustion and guilt pulled at me.
Of course, I didn't cancel everything in a snit and the boys had a wonderful Christmas. When you're four and two, it's easy to be happy with little. But I still remember that jealously which threatened to engulf me and ruin the season.
Later, when I told my friends of my jealousy of them, they pointed out to me - they all had older kids who helped decorate, bake and clean. And I saw it. I saw how I viewed everyone and everything through my circumstances. Instead of enjoying two little boys and the imminent arrival of a sweet baby, I wanted what I couldn't possibly have. Not only did I want it - I felt guilty and angry for not having it. Now how silly does that sound?
To remember to look at what I have and where I am at this point in life. To not judge all through my eyes and circumstances. To realize others are probably wishing they had what I have. All these are things I've reminded myself of for the past 18 years - because there was a Christmas when I let silliness steal my joy.

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