The True Meaning of the Holidays

Kelly Maida

© Copyright 2022 by Kelly Maida

Photo by Richard Loller.
 Photo by Richard Loller.                          

Have you ever thought of an upcoming holiday and felt overwhelmed? We see on television and have watched how others celebrate the holidays. It includes a lot of decorating, cooking and the purchasing of presents. In the past I always felt so rushed. My parents are divorced and I have two children. So the holidays were running to see this member of my family or that member. I remember one Christmas that I was rushing to get ready in the bathroom with my two year old next to me and she shaved one of her eyebrows off. I am not sure how she reached the razor but one minute she had two eyebrows and the next minute she had one. I also remember on one holiday that I had a headache and asked a family member for a tylenol and they gave me a tylenol pm. Letís just say that I do not recall much of that day. Everyone kept asking what was wrong with me until we figured out what happened. So rushing is not always the best thing for us. Have you ever paid for gas and then left without getting gas at the gas station. Well I have.  I feel as if I spent more time rushing than I ever spent  with people. I was always worried that I would upset someone if I was not on time or if I did not see them. I feel that we rush our lives away. We rush to work and then rush home or we are looking for work, paying bills, trying to accommodate everyone. Do you ever try to accommodate yourself? 

Over the past five years I have been trying to remember this. I have been always trying to remember that my mental health matters and I matter too. I think the true meaning of the holidays is different for everyone. To be honest I do not believe that there is just one meaning. No-one has all the answers. And no one way is correct.  And nothing should be forced on you. Maybe you had to work on the holidays and canít make it to holiday parties. Or maybe you donít feel appreciated or cared by the people inviting you. Who said that you had to go see the people that you do not feel comfortable around. Maybe the people that are inviting you are toxic. Do what you feel is right for you in your heart. Maybe you are spending the holidays alone and that is okay too. Or maybe you do not celebrate the holidays and that is okay too.  If you did not put a tree up this year or decorations you will not get a ticket from god or a penalty. And maybe you did not have time to go to church.  I did not have time to go to church this year. But I do make time to pray to god and spirit. I am not trying to tell anyone what to do. But I do want to remind everyone of one thing. Try not to rush.

 I hope that everyone makes the best of what they have. I know that as humans that we all put a lot of pressure on ourselves. The holidays do not have to be perfect and neither do you. You know if we keep rushing so fast all the time, we can rush right through our life. Sometimes I feel as if I am fast forwarding through my whole life. Always going at a very fast pace all the time. I have learned this does not work for me. In my life when I move at high speeds all the time it leads to burn out and exhaustion. We all like to help and accommodate people however if it leads you to burn out or exhaustion it is not healthy. I think we forget about ourselves in the midst of worrying about everyone else. I had to learn how to make myself a priority. I had to learn that the holidays can be whatever you make of it. I do not have to celebrate it in any particular way. I think we need to listen to our needs and not what everyone wants. Remember to do what you feel in your heart.  We do not come with an expiration date. Tomorrow is not guaranteed. So live for today. Happy Holidays everyone. And if you do not celebrate then I hope you are safe and best wishes to you.

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