Christmas is a strange, nostalgic time for me.
When I was a child it was a magical thing filled with Jesus and mass and family and presents. My sister and I would stay up all night after midnight mass and run downstairs at 4 A.M. to look at all the gifts. I loved the decorating, I loved church, I loved the music, I loved every single second of it.
I don’t really feel that way anymore. Maybe that’s the way it is when you grow up, the magic of simple things fades away. I am not filled with overwhelming joy during the holidays, now it’s mostly just stress and fatigue.
Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely still celebrate Christmas. Nowadays it’s just me and my spouse for most of the day, and we visit my in-laws most years. There’s no mass or rushing to open gifts, and not nearly as much decorating, but I suppose it’s still nice in it’s own way.
For a while it was extremely difficult to do the holidays without my big family. Even though I’m in a loving, wonderful relationship, it just didn’t feel the same at all. Now I realize that it’s not bad, just extremely different. I absolutely loved growing up in a large family, but I don’t want one of my own. My little family is wonderful and simple, and our subtle, anti-climatic holiday celebrations mirror that.
Becoming an adult and your own person is extremely difficult, especially around the holidays, but making your own traditions can make things a lot easier.
No, I’m not at all religious anymore- instead of mass my spouse and I spend time together getting the stockings ready for our dogs in the morning while drinking hot beverages and listening to music. Instead of waking up at 4, we sleep in and snuggle most of the morning. There’s no staying in pajamas with chocolate and cheese danish all day- now we share part of our day with our in-laws and put real clothes on.
What are your favorite holiday traditions? How did you feel transitioning from childhood to adulthood during the holidays?