Taking A Break

I saw it coming.  In fact, I mentioned last week that life was about to get very busy. . . and it did.  

This past week was the first of many that I will be working my paying job, editing my novel,  and serving as both Mom and Dad.  Which is really excitement enough for me, but, we are also about to add two of the busiest (and my least favorite) holidays to the mix.  So I am going to take a break from creating my blog posts.  

I let go of a lot of really bad ideas and habits when I entered my middle-age crazy.  One of them was my Super Woman persona.  A younger me would have thought that I could do it all or felt obliged to do it all.  Age gives you the perspective of priorities and the chutzpa to say no to some things.  I don't feel like I am saying no to my blog.  I still love creating it, but I am saying no to being overwhelmed.

So, my final post of 2013 (today's) is about letting go of my Super Woman persona, being honest, and putting all this Christmas crazy stuff in perspective.  Let me start with a big dose of honesty:  I hate Christmas.  Just saying that put me in the same category as axe murderers for some people, but it is the truth.  

It is a holiday FULL of obligations that make it short on fun for a lot of people.  People whose voices no one wants to hear.  It's not that I want others to hate the holiday, my goal is to make it OK to not want to participate (or seriously limit your participation).  

If you think about it, it is the only holiday where you are pushed and feel obliged to participate AND be happy about it.  Those who don't are put in the same category as Ebenezer Scrooge and the Grinch.  The message being that anyone who doesn't like Christmas must be completely evil, all year long, and in all aspects of life.  Those images silence those who might want to say, "no thanks" to so much overwhelming holiday "cheer."  

It's all really overwhelming to me.  And as I have come clean with my dirty secret, I've found out it isn't at the top of the fun list for a lot of other women too.  Most of the additional work to make all that "fun" falls on women.  For some, it is a joy, for others, it is the straw that breaks the camels back, with the additional pressure to keep smiling through it all.  

I have made so many positive changes in my life this past year, this blog just being one of them.  Ironically, changing the way we celebrate Christmas is going to be one of the hardest.  For hundreds of years expectations have been established.  My family, and so many others, believe that the only way you can celebrate Christmas is with cards, and a certain number of gifts, wrapped in a certain way, and the house decorated in a certain way, and certain foods all completed by the designated due dates.  Anything less and you (Mom) have ruined Christmas for everyone else.  

A Winter Holiday I Can Get Behind - Winter Solstice - The Beginning of Longer Days!!
I'm not sure what changes I want to make. It will be a trial and error process.  But I will be making changes.  For one, I am going to do less and try not to feel bad about it.  I want what's best for me and my family, and I don't think blindly following traditions and pretending to like them is on that list.  My first action is being smart enough to see when I have too much on my plate and letting go of some.  I will be back to my blog in the new year.  I am beyond excited about 2014 and I want to keep writing and share with you all the fun, exciting things that will happen.  Until then, I hope all of you find peace during the holidays, and that you make them into something beautiful and meaningful for you.  

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