Christmas gives me feelings. I am sure that I am not atypical in this way. There is this feeling that lies deep inside around the holidays and it really creeps up the day before Christmas Eve. Two years ago I didn’t think I would be spending my holiday in Colorado with three adults, three kids, and too many dogs to count (this year it’s 5). It is not the holiday I grew up with, but I am grown up now. That’s a trip.
I think the thing that gets me in the feels the most is not partaking in the holiday traditions with my side of the family. I have shared some of our traditions with my girlfriend’s family, but the same level of appreciation and investment isn’t there. How can anyone get excited about watching Christmas Eve on Sesame Street unless you’ve been watching it since before you can remember?
Without my girlfriend’s family, I would likely be spending the holidays alone. I am both thankful and sad for the changes. Growing up. I have found myself keeping busy buying presents, making plans, and wrapping until I can’t bear to see another unwrapped gift. I am hoping that one day this feels less sad. It already feels like a new normal, being around the family. However, the absence of my loved ones is not something I have gotten used to yet.
I am thankful to have acquired three kids for whom I get to Christmas shop for. I am thankful for a tree that will be filled with presents that will bring them happiness and excitement. I am thankful to pass down the feelings that my mom made sure we had growing up.
And yet… sometimes… I am still sad.