I’ve been feeling it for a while, the pull to do less. It started as a whisper this summer when I did nothing with our girls. No planned activities, just freedom to be and do what we wanted to do. But ever since then the whispers have grown louder. And now with the holidays upon us, my body is screaming at me to SLOW DOWN.
Which is laughable right? Because it’s the holidays. And we have thousands of school events and presents to buy and wrap, and baking, and all the things that in theory sound like fun…but they’re exhausting.
And coupled with all the things, are all the expectations. Not the ones our kids put on us. Not the ones our husbands put on us. But the ones WE put on OURSELVES.
We have in our minds what needs to be the perfect Christmas or Hanukah, but in reality, we are killing ourselves. We are bending over backward, squeezing 19 pounds of crap into a 5-pound bag, and in the process, we aren’t enjoying what the holidays are meant to be about.
Spending time with our friends. Enjoying baking cookies together. Hanging out in our PJ’s watching thousands of cheesy Christmas and Hallmark movies. Having a cup of tea at 11 am just because we need to put our feet up and enjoy the sparkle of the lights on our tree.
So I’m asking everyone to consider what it is you can take out of your “holiday schedule” to make it easier? Is it buying or catering dinner instead of cooking it? (the horror!) Is it not having coordinating wrapping paper and bows for each individual person? (True story) Is it just letting go and surrendering to whatever is to come?
It’s not easy, to give up our dreams, ideas, and expectations of a magical Christmas morning, but the reward is worth it.
So this holiday season I’ve declared we’re not doing “literally nothing,” but we are doing LESS. So much less. We are saying no to things that don’t serve our family needs and saying yes to ourselves.
Because this is all we have. These days with our kids are flying by, and who knows how many more magical Santa and Elf filled years we have left. So let’s stop, breathe, savor, bask, enjoy, and de-stress this December.
Santa doesn’t have to wrap every gift. (Bows are just as awesome)
And cards can be sent at New Year’s or forgotten altogether.
But the one person we can’t forget this year is ourselves. Because as a friend said to me recently, taking care of ourselves IS taking care of our kids.
Did you like this post? Then please follow along on Facebook. You may also like these 5 Ways to Fill Your Cup When Life Gets Overwhelming.
And What I Learned From My Kids Not So Crappy Christmas Cookies.
I feel this. And I want to air something and find out if what I’m feeling is okay and me not being a horrible person.
So this summer my mother nearly died of pneumonia. She had surgery, was put in medical coma two times and was told she had lung cancer. The cancer turned out to be a large infection in her lungs, large enough to be mistaken as cancer.
During recovery she expressed wishes to spend Christmas with our entire family. I have four siblings and between us is 11 grandkids. Due to medical reasons we are no longer doing the big evening, but she wants us all to gather on December 25th for lunch and party games. It will takes us two hours to drive one way to get to the party, in snow and potential horrible roads. My girls are 2 and 5, and I really want to have that day at home to relax and destress from the big night before (we open presents on December 24th after dinner).
Am I a horrible person for putting the needs of my family of four first instead of travelling to my parents? We have plenty of time during the holidays to visit them, with less of a crowd and more time for them to interact with my girls. We rarely visit them, and they will need to really fight for attention when all 11 kids are gathered.
I want to honor my mother, but I feel the price for my husband and myself is too high. 🙁
Kristen Hewitt says
This is a tough one. And I get it, it’s a lot of work and taxing with two small kids. But on the other hand, she thought she was going to die. Would it be that hard one last time for her? You have to listen to your heart and seek approval from within. Only YOU know what’s right for your family. I’m sorry you are feeling so much pressure and hope the answer comes to you soon.