I think we should reschedule Christmas for every third year. It comes too often. There is too much stuff in my house and I feel worried about not having enough stuff. I keep on looking for more stuff and worrying that my children will be disappointed in what I have created for Christmas. This happens every year. I gave up sending out Christmas cards because everyone though my ex’s cards were from me as well. I decided there wasn’t much point in sending out cards until the time something eventful happened in the family. Now I think I will just let my ex announce it. All those cards required so much thought and maintenance. I had to keep the list updated all during the year and then I had to take the family picture. Someone was always unhappy with the picture and someone always had to be photoshopped in as they were missing on that day. Basically it was a disaster. Then there was all that money spent on stamps and printing. Then I decided to print the cards myself. This was also a disaster.
I also hate Christmas decorations, all those ridiculous ornaments with hooks that are missing: the unruly angel who always slips sideways on the top of the tree, and the only ones I like are the frame with the dog portrait in it and the children’s paper mache designs, and then there are the lights! Oh My God! The lights! If I have to spend one more night unravelling lights only to plug them in and find they don’t work I will jump out my window. I know, I know, I live on the first floor! My latest pet peeve, however, is all the stores who are asking you at the end of your purchase if you want to make a donation to some charity.I find this practice bizarrely coercive. If we say “no” we are looked at as if we are mean and scroogelike. Sometimes the salesperson asks again if they can add just a small amount of change. The other day I found myself screeching at the salesperson that I was in no way going to contribute to this nonprofit and then I made it worse by giving my standard and very long-winded explanation of why I did not want to contribute. I feel we should contribute to our own charities and be able to choose these charities freely and on our own. I think stores should not get into the act of asking for money for this purpose as the overhead of sorting out the cash for the charity would be more than if we gave to the charity. Today there was a man next to me who fell for this and said he would contribute $50.00! I almost got into it with him but he looked so Republican I fell silent.
The fact is I am strangely happy and I have no one to thank for this happiness except my strange self. I am happy to be going home and wrapping presents my children will not be that interested in and playing mindlessly with Rosie who is also happy which is why I adore her. My favorite thing I got for myself is a Dachshund wire frame that lights up which is outside my door. I think now I am lucky as there is no one living here who is grouchy, removed, lacking in spirituality or generosity and the house is mine alone. I used to think holidays were the worst time for single people but I have changed my mind. I have several dinners to look forward to with people I adore and no gifts to give I don’t really want to give. I hate receiving and love giving which shows I am a control freak. I don’t really care if someone likes my gifts but it is nice if they do. The worst thing is if you think about a gift and prepare it for a long time and the person you give it to doesn’t even comment on it. This happened to me recently with a man I like. I think I will not give him any more gifts. That is a simple lesson to learn. We have a choice about who to love and who to leave alone.