the season to attempt to be superhuman, fail miserably and cry in your eggnog.
(Let's not and say we did.) This week's post on Mom.me is a twelve-step
survival guide for the month of December.
Pinterest at all costs — I can't. I mean, I can't even. I mean, it's like ... you know? I get so
panicked looking at perfectly coiffed holiday decorations that I just want
to not hang holiday decorations. Which is convenient because I don't. And
then I feel guilty because I grew up in a Christmas decoration explosion with
Christmas lights around the windows and the whole nine. Guilt. Guilt. Guilty.
Guiltness. So I stay away. I stay away from anything festive, beautiful,
holiday-y, including websites that make me feel like a failure, people who make
me feel like a failure, people in general and all websites. (Just kidding. I
love people. And websites.)
out the kids — This is something I too often forget and is such a
win/win for everyone involved. My older kids have become extremely helpful and
able-bodied in their old age and can do almost anything I can: laundry,
dishes, sweeping. For every hour I spend trying to figure out how to get
family glamour shots taken for the holiday card that I will get around to sending in
December 2015, my kids could have already emptied the dishwasher and swept the
hallway. WIN? WIN.
all your shopping yesterday — Wait. You mean, you haven't EVEN
STARTED!?? Who ARE you? YOU ARE THE WORST! I AM ALSO THE WORST! I HAVEN'T
STARTED EITHER! WHO STARTS BEFORE THE 17TH!?
a to-do list — Seriously, though. You HAVE to start writing a list. You
have to. Because you keep forgetting everything and you don't have to forget
everything—you just have to make a list. (That was the exact transcript of a
text Hal recently sent me after I totally forgot Fable's doctor's appointment
and realized I had lost track of outstanding checks owed to me that I really
needed to not lose track of.) Read: I am writing this for myself at this point
because I have absolutely no idea how to not be holidazed, not to mention how
not to make bad puns like "holidazed."
This is the time in the program where I let go. I embrace the fact that I will never be that 'holiday mom' and I salute myself for being a mom during the holidays.
to bed an hour earlier — And drink one more cup of coffee in the
peace with mediocrity — This time of year seems to bring out the best
and/or worst in humans, which is frustrating and/or amazing and/or
cryingcrazyamazing. Some of us are killer at being everyday types; others
flourish with theme parties and theme months and get totally into the spirit.
It's OK to be just OK this time of year. It just is. Come here, let's hug.
7. Make a lot of plans and then break (some of) them last minute — I was
talking to a friend the other day about December festivities when I realized that I
am very good at saying yes to everything and then canceling last minute because
I overbooked/am way too tired/a million other reasons. And that's totally OK.
yourself go — Shaving your legs, brushing your hair and teeth ... these
things take time. Valuable time you could be spending making garlands out of
vintage tin men and/or doing something much more important than, you know,
looking after yourself.
totally kidding — Please take care of yourself. You are awesome.
10. Let it go — OK, so I'm going to get really serious now because I know you're
probably a little stressed because every parent is a little stressed this time
of year and if you're not stressed, well, then ... hi, you're my hero. December
is the most stressful month for most people I know, be it because of financial strain (hi!),
time being an absolute bitch (what's up!?) or juggling attempts to work while kids are off for a three-week break (hey, again!). Oh, and then
there's travel, gifts, the buying and the making and the cooking and the
cleaning and the decorating and the trying to maintain a cheery disposition for
the kids who ARE SO EXCITED and HAPPY and feeling the holiday joy.
year, I start the month off being all UGH and WOMP and HOLIDAZE, AMIRITE, and
then, around the 20th, become a Christmas/Hanukkah Elf. I blast Peter Paul and
Mary and we play dreidel and go Christmas/Hanukkah caroling and we read "T'was
the Night Before Christmas" as a family before putting on our own winter concert
in the living room.
before that (i.e. now) I just want to hide. And that's OK. This is the time in
the program where I let go. I embrace the fact that I will never be that "holiday mom"
and I salute myself for being a mom during the holidays.
only advice for staying sane is to find your zen, take care of yourself, cut
yourself some slack and realize that we're all doing what we can with what we
have to thrive this time of year. One day at a time, one foot in front of the
other, one party cancellation at a time.