I’m doing a lot of reading of blogs, surfing around Facebook, nodding my head a lot, reblogging some … but in spite of all that, Christmas is still coming, lol…
I actually am feeling a kind of happy about it, which is unusual for me, because usually I am all about avoiding it, and dreading it.
Well, one reason is the lack of funds, but that’s not primary. When I can, I give my son some money, and give to the Christmas offering at church. Never could afford much more than that.
Well, that’s not true. I remember the first Christmas, as a kid with a paper route, when I was able to buy “something” for every of my then-9 siblings, for Mom, and for Dad. SO EXCITING! Maybe each item was under $5., but every gift was special, and thought through.
Over time, as I made more money, I was able to give more than a token gift. REAL exciting!
And then further along in time, as my illness has progressed, back to not being able to buy for anyone at all (I have bipolar, folks, which usually means depression and anxiety, which usually means, I am either between jobs, beginning one, or ending one. None of these phases lasts very long).
I can’t just blame the lack of gifting on the money. I went for five years not having contact with my family at all. My fault, the fault of the therapists, the fault, again, of the illness. [One of these days I will talk about “the fault of the therapists,” but not now. Not when I’ve digressed so well already].
So, uh, where were I?
Avoiding and dreading. Well, after the no contact thing, I started finding the whole Christmas thing very depressing. No family to sit around a table with, and a blatant refusal to enjoy it otherwise.
Why else did I avoid and dread it?
Well, there’s the depression thing. That.
That’s probably the biggest thing.
But wait, there is something even bigger than the depression. It’s the expectation that it will be depression. And even, the choice that it will be depressing.
How could that BE? Aren’t I just a victim of my illness?
Not quite. Really, I do have choices. Ok, not always, but sometimes.
Like, the last few years, I chose to attend a community dinner and bring along friends who don’t celebrate with THEIR families, for various and sundry reasons of their own.
It made me feel a part of, under the guise of being helpful to others.
I’m good at that last one.
So anyway, this year, I’m doing the same, the community dinner. Last year, my son came along, so that was really cool. Not sure what he is doing this year.
But anyway! I keep digressing!
What I want to say is, this year I am not just “supposed” to feel (here comes the list): Grateful, happy, excited, spiritual, close to the Lord, close to people …
I am actually feeling some of that!
And not in a manic-y scary sort of way. Just, kind of a normal feeling of happiness and anticipation.
Oh did I fail to mention another reason I dread Christmas?
Yes I am undigressing a little, sorry.
I had a suicide attempt in December of 1985. Due to some of the reasons I listed above.
But I survived!
And every year I seemed to think I had to pay homage to the Anniversary of the Failed Suicide!
This year, nah, I don’t think I will do that.
I think I will be happy. And just allow that.
(and the other stuff on the list)