Holiday Anxiety

Does anyone else have a condition I’ve coined as “holiday anxiety”? You know, that feeling of dread as the middle of November rolls around and you have a dozen (which feels like a million) different events or commitments on you calendar in the next 45 days; you have to redecorate your home to reflect your Christmas spirit and then take it down in a timely manner so as not to look like you’re THAT person; you have to decide how much money you DON’T have to spend on those you love and how much you feel compelled to spend on others for whom you want to show appreciation and caring; you have a dozen Christmas parties – all of which you would love to have the mental fortitude to attend and enjoy, but the thought of which just makes you tired and want a large mug of hot chocolate and a good book – with a Christmas theme, of course.
Now please don’t get me wrong, I love the idea of Christmas!!! Family gatherings – relaxed and full of laughter and love; gift giving centered in thoughtfulness and selflessness. The lights and the warmth of Christmas decor always relieve my “holiday anxiety”. But I have, in the last few days, had an overwhelming desire to ‘cancel’ the holidays.
I understand this all stems from my commitments, many of which I feel I have no choice whether or not to participate; the thought that it’s my responsibility to make sure things work out for everyone else in my ‘world’. I look at my calendar and can feel myself recoil – stress – and want nothing more than that hot chocolate and book. I often find myself wanting to “hibernate until Jan 2nd”.
Unfortunately, this year is no different. Thanksgiving is over and the day held little joy for me. My own fault – but there you have it. And the thought of the Christmas season being upon us just makes me tired and stressed. This is truly one of those years that I wish I had the ability to time travel to January 2nd.
Then I think of the memories I would miss making with my family and the blessing I would miss in ministering to those to whom God has called me to minister. As of right now, these thoughts don’t make me want to hibernate less, but they do help me renew my commitment to do my best tomorrow and to do what I can each day to overcome the paralyzing, mind-scrambling “holiday anxiety”. But today, give me hot chocolate and a good book and maybe, just maybe, I’ll make it to tomorrow.

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