Frequent readers (hi Dad) may recall that December 23rd is a bit of an issue for me. It is usually the breaking point of the self-induced holiday hoopla, and consequently the single most likely day of the year for my head to fall off. This year, I have a personal campaign of positive thoughts to make December 23rd a good day, at least a normal day, at best a calm, peaceful, centered day.
Only two months to go. I have a team of doctors working ’round the clock on this effort, and have enlisted the help of my dog, who is also a helpful sort of gal.
First of all, she has been working on exorcising my inner grinch, which is symbolized by this stuffed grinchy toy. In his June photo, he still had a mischievous look on his face:
Kenzie has been working him over, and showing him who is boss. This must be helpful to me in some subconscious way. I like how he appears to be waving his little grinchy hand to say “uncle, already!”:
After many months, he lost his santa hat (but, sure, not his head), and has sustained a small rip in his leg, which he claims is just a flesh wound…
I think he is a goner, and I am going to be just fine.
December 23rd historically has not been one of my finer days.
I have been known to fall apart on December 23rd. It is something about the holly jollidays, the anticipation and preparation and frankly the perfectionist tendency to try to make it a perfect holiday for everyone. Kind souls have been trying to tell me to relax about it for years — No gifts! No fuss! Kind souls have practically whacked me over the head with good advice, but I had on Santa blinders and did not see the wisdom of their words and good examples.
I did not want to let go of all the hoopla and merriment and magic, especially the last couple years when some of the “magic” had fizzled away into the world of logic and what’s real. Ironically, the harder I fought to keep the Happy in the Holidays, the more overwhelmed I became. Which is, of course, quite silly and counterproductive.
Now December 23rd is synonymous with me having an episode, as in “Now don’t go all December 23rd on me” or “Stop it! Mom will go December 23rd!” But finally, last year I believe I learned my lesson. Hello, universe? I get it now. Do not need to go through the exercise again, thanks for the nice lesson.
Last year, I made a serious tactical error and took two young boys shopping for suit coats and dress slacks, belts, ties and dress shoes. On December 23rd. I was delusional with pre-holiday manic preparation syndrome (PHMPS).
And you already know how it probably turned out, but I am going to tell you anyway: the sizes were picked over, nothing fit, small people were squirrelly in front of full-length mirrors… and then my head fell off in the dressing room. All because a couple of boys were being boys. My head rolled down a couple stalls, and I would have sent the oldest down to retrieve it for me, but he had just accidentally locked himself into a changing stall.
Ho, ho, ho.
Okay, so I have six months to change the situation. No more conniptions, melt-downs, head-rolling, or running away from home.
Make December 23rd a joyful day, with no perfectionistic PHMPS grinchiness sneaking back in…
That’s my story, and I’m sticking to it.