The Holiday Happiness Struggle

Hello dear readers,

I hope this belated post finds you all doing well. I am generally good, but life has been rather unexpected as of late, hence the delay in posting yet again.

Today’s blog is mainly about the holiday slump, but other fun stuff will be peppered in there too (bad pun, I know).

As we sort of steamroll into the end of the year it dawned on me a couple of things: 1) thanksgiving (for the Americans, at least) is next week. ALREADY. And 2) quite truthfully, as some readers know from previous posts, I hate this time of year. Now, before you stop reading and cast me off forever for being a Grinch, hear me out.

On one hand, the holidays are a magical time of year for togetherness, love, altruism and selfless giving. I am TOTALLY down for those qualities. However, the dark side of the holidays is where I’m lost and I hate it. Selfishness, greed, consumerism, obligation, pressure, expectation, depression, and repression are all too common and as I get older, maybe it gets easier to spot or maybe it’s just getting worse… I’m not sure. But the bottom line is that I have no patience for it and it makes me sad and angry. That is not to say that there aren’t bright spots, because there are, but good grief… People literally killing one another for a tv is just pure madness to me.

The holidays are also used as a dividing tactic, in my opinion. Families can’t be together because one member isn’t welcome, so they go somewhere else. Or the meals the celebrations are inevitably surrounding aren’t inclusive to everyone either. Such as, I’m a vegan and when I spend a holiday with my extended family, I have to eat beforehand. There will surely be a veggie tray and some soup my grandmother insists I try because I can just pick out the chicken… Mashed potatoes, but we used skim milk… what do you mean it’s not vegan?

I know they mean well, but I’m always the outsider. Even growing up I was the outsider, mainly because I was outspoken when it probably wasn’t a good idea to be and way too smart for my own good. Not much has changed. Strangely, my friend’s, boyfriend’s and now my husband’s families have always been more inclusive to me than my own family. I guess that’s why I find myself ‘collecting the strays’ ever since high school. People who have crappy families, no families or whatever their situation, they spend holidays with me. I think they need it as much as I do, that feeling of togetherness.

But as I said, I struggle during the holiday stampede and endless Xmas music to find my bliss and truly just can’t wait for the craziness to be over. I’m not sure about in other cities, but in this one, people. get. crazy. during the holidays. They get pushier, shovier, and shorter tempered in their rush to do the next thing. The universe blessed Phoenix in that it very rarely snows here, because truly I don’t think I could handle the people, snow, and the people handling snow. It would likely cause the end of the world. Just saying.

I just recently took a fundraising position for a nonprofit organization and after my first day of field training, at a mall kiosk, I’m not only doubting my effectiveness in this position but also doubting humanity. Generally speaking, I’m expected to be a barker at people walking by. This is much harder than I give those mall guys credit for. At least the makeup or jewelry people have a product to sell. We are ‘selling’ an idea. We have to tap into what we think people will care about: kids, families, disasters, violence… We have to poke the hot button. And in a split second. I am just not that smooth. I’ve never done sales before. I’m an office worker or manual labor. Standing in the middle of a shopping mall trying to hustle? Damn hard and way out of my comfort zone. I’m going to try and stick it out to see if I make improvements, but the outlook is bleak.

I’m already finding myself wishing it were January.

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~ by wendemachete on November 20, 2013.

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