Thursday, December 8, 2011

Why I am Disillusioned of the Holidays

My Christmas tree at the apartment
in San Antonio

I hate the Holidays.

I should probably explain. I don't hate the Holidays; rather, I am disillusioned of them. The Holidays usually do not go well for me. I despise outdated, cliched Christmas music, I never have money for gifts (even when I had a job, I never had money for gifts), and I hate Christmas shopping if I do have money. The price of food tends to go up, as well as the price of gas, and I usually have to travel.

My idea of celebrating the Holidays is complicated mostly by having no money, which means I cannot even do what I plan to do, which is give to charities. When I worked at Papouli's Greek Grill, we had an Angel Tree from the Salvation Army. Everyone got to choose a child to give to, and what the child wanted was listed on the angel, as well as their clothing size and shoe size. The employees were encouraged to participate, but didn't have to, as most of the time it was directed at customers. Every year we had the tree I tried to give to a child, which meant going all out. I got the kid a set of clothes, a book, and what they listed for enjoyment (if I could afford it). If they had a few small things listed, I tried to get all of it for them. One year a kid asked for a scooter. I had to put that one back on the tree after I found out I would only be getting my husband one thing, and he got me a lot of stuff (he usually does). You see my idea of giving at Christmas is not giving a useless gift to someone who already has stuff. I give gifts to people who start at having nothing and go from there. My idea is that if you have something already, you should be giving gifts to children who wouldn't be having a Christmas at all if it were not for your generosity. I complain that I have nothing, but I have a roof over my head, nine computer systems, a car to drive, a husband who doesn't beat me, a college degree and parents who love me. There are people out there who don't even have the first one, much less any of the others.

And now there is the special problem of getting gifts for the kids, my adorable nieces and nephew, all of whom have had their Nice Cards from the North Pole threatened due to their greedy present mongering and milk-flinging. I can't stand to watch Christmas get ruined because those kids can't keep their noses out of what my mom liked to call the Christmas Closet. Don't get me wrong, as a child, I was one of the worst gift-guessers, present shakers, and peekers of my time. It forced my mom to threaten our Christmas fun altogether. Now my sister and I are getting a taste of that for ourselves. So, today, I am taking my niece, Audrey, to go pick out a gift to donate to a child in need. I had hoped to get my own children into this some day, and I hope I can help Audrey discover that giving a gift to a child who isn't expecting one is just as fun as getting one.
Audrey and Cole play Christmas music with Uncle Ben. Nerd
hovers in background.
I don't hate Christmas. I just hate the way everyone treats it, and I need not remind you about the music thing. Generally speaking, with all the trouble in Europe, ending the War in Afghanistan, the economy swimming in the toilet, and Occupy Wallstreet, how can anyone get out there and spend their hard earned money--possibly ignoring medical bills--on presents for people who go out and buy their own stuff anyway. Everyone except the kids is getting baked goods from me this year. Hope that's okay, because I have way too many bills to pay for a person without a job.

So...Merry Christmas!

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