I have started my Christmas blog a couple times this week and gotten nowhere. I wanted to write something cheery or funny about the season. But, when it comes down to it, I can’t lie. This has been one of my hardest posts to write, and even harder to share.
Because here’s the truth: I fight depression most Christmases. I am fine the other eleven and a half months of the year, but when Christmas rolls around, it comes back like that credit card balance you thought you’d paid off before you saw something awesome on Amazon.
I think it started young, with my dysfunctional, disconnected small family, Christmas Eve screaming fight semi-tradition all the while surrounded by media images of large loving families and warm celebrations. And when I was older, returning to school after Winter’s Break to all my peers recounting their amazing holidays and toy hauls when I was the child then of a single Mom who couldn’t afford to get me much.
I try harder for my kids’ sake than I ever did for myself. I bought decorations, a fake tree, tons of presents and hung our stockings with care. I sent a cheerful card to family and friends of the kids looking adorable. I drove around looking at lights for the benefit of my preschooler, and he loved it, and I enjoyed his excitement and my toddler slept through it. We have been singing Christmas Carols in the car and around the house. We will even try to go to a Christmas Eve church service.
So hopefully they will not feel the impact because I never know how hard it will hit…anywhere from slight melancholy that is almost unnoticeable to nearly paralyzing depression that leaves me unable to reach out, and canceling plans with friends at the last minute because I literally cannot leave the house.
I am hoping for my kids’ sake that I can cover it. At least be cheerful enough not to ruin their holiday. If it doesn’t hit hard this year, it should be relatively easy. If it does, well, I don’t have a plan for that yet even though I should. I will get us through it somehow; I always do. It just isn’t pretty.