Wednesday, December 17, 2014

A Little Break From Countdown ~ Alternately Titled: Gettin Real

So.  I'll just jump right in.
This can be a tough time of year.
I mean, it's good.  It's probably my favorite time of year. 
And with all of the talk about counting down to Christmas.  The activities.  The crafts.
The happy, smiling, photographs.  It *looks* like the most blissful, joyous season ever.
And it can be.  But it can be tough too.

And we don't always see that side on social media.
Like.  Is it just me, or do children find it EXTRA difficult to get along in December?
It feels like we need an attitude check, daily.
Me, included. 
This one doesn't need a lot of explanation, does it? 
Finances can be extra tight in December. 
And when you're in love with all the decorations, the pretties, the White Chocolate Peppermint M&Ms {ahem}, the stuff that you're inundated with starting the day after Halloween.  Well, it surely makes it hard not to covet, doesn't it?  {Or perhaps that's just me}.
The missing.
It sure can be difficult to be filled with joy when someone {or multiple someones} are missing from your holidays.  You miss them every single day of the year.  Every single minute of the day.  But, man, the missing seems to be exponential when it's Christmas, and you can't hug them, hold them close, tell them you love them.  And equally painful: not being able to ease that pain for others.  Not being big enough, strong enough. It's a daily struggle, to be sure.  But so much harder during the holidays, when you're trying to hold it together.  Trying to make it magical for the littles.  And you feel like you fail at it time and time again.
And all of the insecurities.  All of the doubts.  All of the worries.
Those don't just take a hike because it's Christmas.
If anything, they are multiplied as well.
I love living in a small town.  And I hate living in a small town. 
I think I'd love it a lot more if I hadn't grown up here ~ so much past to contend with.
Yes, hello, my name is Liz, and at 34 years old, I *still* care {a LOT} about what others think.
And you know what, people can be mean.  And people can hurt.  And I have an extra heaping of sensitive feelings.  
Nope, that's not stressful at all.
So, while we are having good days, making lots of memories, and trying our best to make the most of what we've been given, sometimes it's a relief to just be real.  Not have to paste on that smile.
Admit that it's difficult.  And hold tight to the knowledge that God will see us through.
So, here's a big squeeze from me to you ~ just in case you need one too ♥
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Jenny said...

I know what mean about missing people. It is hard to have holidays without those loved ones.

I bet that is difficult growing up in a small town. People know too much about you. It's like you can't have any secrets.

Sarah Shumate said...

This as such a beautiful post, Liz! I love the way you write. Christmas is not my favorite time of year for exactly some of the reasons you stated. I always try to make everything perfect, which as we both know, normally ends well for no one. Christmas is just a little too stressful for me.

As much as I'll miss our families this year, I've been noticing how much more I've been enjoying the season this time around - a lot of the chaos we typically experience comes from trying to do a million different things with our families and this's just the three of us. I'd never tell my mother, but...I actually really like it better this way. :)

This Old House said...

I agree 100%. I was driving today with the kids in the van and the song "Have yourself a Merry Little Christmas" came on- and the lyric, "Let your heart be light" really struck a cord with me. To be light. To be simple. To have my heart be soft. Such a great post, Liz!

Busy Bee Suz said...

I love your honesty here...yep, it can be the most wonderful time of the year, but with extra helpings of despair, sadness and tears. I had myself a good old fashioned cry Christmas night when well meaning family friend sent me pictures of my brothers grave decorated by my Mom. Yikes. Why?
I know you've lost a lot of good people in the last few years and it really is hard to celebrate when they aren't with you.
Sending that big hug right back your way, cause you need to too. XOXO


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