As I sit here and look back over the Christmas holiday, so much joy fills me inside. You see, me and holidays, we don’t really get along.
I stress over them, and OCD over them, and it just drives me crazy. I get anxious and tensed and then the holiday is instantly ruined before it even arrives. I don’t know why I do it to myself, but it started when I was a kid, and I haven’t really been able to kick it. I feel so bad, because my husband and children have to endure the stress with me. They end up on edge days before- waiting to see when I will finally blow up.
This past Christmas holiday was different. I made lists for each family member. I started and finished shopping early. I bought lots of things off amazon so I could avoid the malls at all cost. Okay- I lied. I went to the mall once- to get my hubby some bath and body works soap that he’s obsessed with (eucalyptus mint- smells so good!) Little did I know that exact day I wanted to go, they were having a huge sale on hand soaps ($2 soaps) and the line to checkout was basically out the door. My children got super antsy and they misbehaved and I had to drag a screaming 4 year old out of there while walking assisted with a crutch (from my knee surgery.) I was mortified and embarrassed and it was after that Saturday that I swore I wouldn’t go back to the mall. So I didn’t. I found everything on my list online and pretty much kept UPS and Fedex in business those weeks before Christmas. My door step looked like the post office’s back room. But getting all the shopping done early and knowing exactly what I wanted to buy, helped keep my anxiety at bay. I was actually excited about Christmas instead of anxious.
Another thing that was different this year was my expectations about the holiday. I tried really hard to have zero expectations. Maybe not exactly zero, but they were pretty low. My husband kept asking for ideas and instead of listing off a million things that I wanted, I tried to ensure him that whatever he got was fine. I asked for one big thing- a computer- but I had been
asking begging for a new one for 3 years so the request wasn’t anything new. And when I opened my gifts on christmas morning I was happily surprised with everything that I received. Usually I have huge expectations for my gifts- I expect to get the very best of everything. I expect my husband to read my mind and to know what I want. [Previous years, I shared with him all sorts of things that I wanted/needed for our house in the coming year and he bought those things for me- which any other sane person would think is great- but apparently I ‘m not wasn’t that sane. Because in the past, receiving those gifts upset me. I guess I wanted him to just know about other items that I wanted (and didn’t receive) but thinking back on it- how would he have known that I wanted it if I never said anything?] OBVIOUSLY my expectations were are wayyyyyyy exaggerated and I don’t think that I ever really thought about how high my expectations were and how I needed to should lower them. To be honest, I never really thought about my attitude/expectations towards holidays until this year. Don’t worry- I get it now and I’m actually excited about future holidays.
I will get into it more in a different blog- but I have really been thinking about my expectations lately and if they are actually obtainable. This Christmas I tried really hard to let go of those expectations. It really made a huge difference for me. With the lack of stress upon me, I enjoyed every aspect of the past holiday.