Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Christmas? Already??

I got my newest Avon catalog today. WTF??? Christmas? Really? Already?

That's it. I refuse. School has just started as has football season and they are advertising Christmas?? Nope, not gonna do it.

Now those of you that know me, know that I do not get all giddy about Christmas. It isn't that I dislike Christmas, far from it as a matter of fact. I just resent the commercialism that surrounds it. I resent the fact that for approximately 360 days a year, some people are anything but a joy to be around. Yet the week of Christmas they suddenly develop those familial feelings that they don't have any other time of year. They suddenly feel all charitable to those less fortunate when all year long they will cross a street to avoid a homeless person.

I remember being a kid and right around Thanksgiving, the Sears Wish Book would arrive. Oh man! Your parents would hand it to you along with a pencil and tell you to mark only those presents you REALLY want. Presents you REALLY want?? Uh hmm This is a book of toys. Oh my, sensory overload! Of course my parents really did not use it as a guideline as to what I wanted. Sure I gave out millions of hints about that Schwinn 3 speed complete with banana seat. Oh and there was the “portable” record player. Oh man that thing was COOL!

No I don't hate the holidays. I just hate what they have turned into. A number of years ago, a doll came out that, I swear, made everyone lose their minds. Number one, this doll was ugly. This doll and the millions like it where touted as your very own baby... You could even find one to look like your precious little Jane or Johnny. All the kids wanted them. Including my precious daughter. I tried everything to talk her out of that doll but she would have none of it. That was the ONLY thing on her list that year. No pressure though mom, Santa will come through. He always does. ARGGGGGHHHH!

So mom (Santa) did the only thing she could do. She stood in line for hours along with other crazy parents and grandparents at the local Wal-Mart. When they released them, OMGD, I managed to get one in my hands just as they ran out. I was home free, no worries, Santa came through! I turned to leave and I was amazed. Standing before me was another mother. She literally reached out and attempted to grab it out of my hands. So help me, I almost reached out and “touched” her, but I resisted the urge. She was screaming. Screaming!?! “Oh my God! I have to have that! My daughters Christmas will be ruined if I don't get her one. Please, I am begging you?”.

Something just turned off inside. I looked at her and asked her one question. “Your child's Christmas will be ruined if she doesn't get this doll. So if your child will be ruined for lacking this toy, who's fault is that?” At that point I literally threw it at her, and hit her in the face with it. No, I am not ashamed that I did that. I walked out of Wal-Mart and went home.

For the next couple of weeks, I spoke with my kids numerous times about the joys of Christmas and what it REALLY meant. I was surprised when my daughter asked me the make sure that Santa didn't go out of his way to bring her that doll that she would rather go get an angel off the tree and help some other child in need. I could not have been prouder of my children than I was at that moment.

So the rule is, I will not discuss presents, plans, wants, or needs until Thanksgiving. Once Thanksgiving is done, then let the season begin, BUT NOT UNTIL THEN!

I know that sounds cold and I suppose to some it is, but isn't the season more about what you give than what you receive? Isn't it about hearing squealing kids on Christmas morning when they open their gifts? Or about that feeling you get when you sit across from your family over Christmas dinner? All of them in one place at one time?

I am sure that a lot of people will disagree with me and that's fine. Just know this: I will not discuss this with anyone until after Thanksgiving. Maybe you will have forgotten by then or be so wrapped up with the stresses of finding that perfect gift that you will just agree to disagree.

P.S. If you are the mother in question, reading this blog? I still don't feel bad about hitting you with that damn doll. I just hope that your children learned to appreciate the season for what it should be.

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