Sunday, December 12, 2010

Hungover pre-birthday edition

Oy vey. I thought I was feeling bad from doing too much fine detail on some projects, but I now know it's last night's merriment.  I don't go out much anymore, but events are conspiring to make this a very social winter.  I just finished making my husband a stocking to take with us to my family's Christmas.  We usually have Christmas with his family, due to far-away relatives coming into town.  They are also super chill and don't have holiday drama.  I love that.  My family, on the other hand, is the reason I crinkle my nose when the word  "Christmas" is spoken.  They focus heavily on the "importance" of the holiday, but I can't tell what that importance is (not religion and not "being together", as someone always starts a fight).  There's also a heavy focus on gifts, which can be trying to the members who have significantly less money.  I wish that being areligious would help, but it makes no difference.  We have 3-5 nativities around the house, but no one mentions the J man.  Personally, I'd like a Christmas that is less uptight and obsessed with the idea of Christmas.  It sets a person up for stress and disappointment.

My mom called to solidify my birthday dinner plans tonight (real b-day is tomorrow).  I told her I'd just finished making a stocking for my husband, and there was a pause.  She said, "But I got him a stocking, we've used it for years."  I told her I know, but I made him one, because I'm his wife.*.  She hemmed and hawed about how that was really sweet, and how we could take it with us when we move, but she had a really weird attitude about it.  Is it weird that I wanted his stocking to be something I made or, heck, even bought? She's neither his mom or wife, so why is she being proprietary?  That is just one more facet to why I get stressed about my family's Christmas.

I think instead of Christmas, we should just have a second Halloween. And then in January, we can have Christmas, but we change all the traditions and make it less awful.  Cancel Black Friday. Tithe?  I tried to just donate money one Christmas, and a few people got huffy about it.  Seriously. I wasn't being in the spirit of the holiday for them.

At least I don't have to do three Christmases (I only have two).  Some friends are going out of the country for Christmas, a belated honeymoon, but they still have to observe the holiday separately with both families.  This is really stressful and time-consuming for them, and they see their family often anyway.  Not saying it's all moms, but the moms in these scenarios employ tactics of guilt if they don't see their children ON CHRISTMAS DAY.  And my mom doesn't care if I only stay a day, it has to be Christmas.  I can spend a whole week with my in-laws, but she doesn't care as long as I'm with her on the 25th.  Personally, I think that's pretty fucked up.

So, I'm going to try to nap this sickness off in time for an Indian feast tonight.  Sadly, I think I'm going to have to self-medicate a little before I go, just because thinking about my mom having a power play for my husband's Christmas memories is making me feel awful.  Is she going to make our future children's stockings too?

*Making a stocking isn't something I think is a wife's duty. But certainly if said wife is a crafter.

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