It’s started

By Mir
December 13, 2004

Hi ho, hi ho, it’s off to the last couple weeks of craziness leading up to Christmas we go….

I love Christmas. In theory. Sometimes even in reality. But not usually. And the two weeks beforehand? I could do without.

My offspring are wired for sound. It’s an artifact of the season; it happens every year, and I still haven’t figured out how to counteract or handle it. And I don’t mean they’re in the spirit of giving or even that they’re going crazy over the anticipation of twelve tons of crap that they’re sure to receive.

I mean they’ve lost their ever-lovin’ minds.

December 11th, someone flips a switch, and all the ANTICIPATION and BUSYNESS and SPLENDOR of the season converge to render their delicate little minds discombobulated and irrational. It’s too much for them to take, all of this hype and waiting. So their brains just *poof* blow a fuse. The results are many and varied and unpleasant.

… Chickadee took some stickers from Monkey, and when I demanded she give them back, she ripped them into shreds so that no one could have them. Later, she cried for hours about how they were the most wonderful stickers ever and she wanted them back.
… Monkey had a cosmic meltdown last night because I gave Chickadee some cold medicine. He wanted some, too. Only, he doesn’t have a cold. This logic was wasted on him. He screamed, he cried, he fake-coughed until I was sure he would vomit, he told me he was running away, he cried that I don’t love him. (This will be my litmus test from now on… is it love? Let me give you some Triaminic!)
… Both children are bouncing around so much in bed after lights out that I can sit downstairs and pretend there is a herd of buffalo on the upper floor. Despite the extra hour (or more!) that they seem to be staying awake, they are getting up earlier than usual. Let’s face it; my kids aren’t all that personable when they’re well-rested. This sleep deprivation is cancelling out what little charm they have.

So that’s them. And as much as I would love to blame my state of mind on the kids–because, hey, send ’em to therapy in style, I say!–I’m dealing with my own issues, as well. This isn’t an easy couple of weeks for anyone, I guess.

First off, this is the very first year since I became a mother that I will not be spending Christmas Eve and Christmas Morning with my children. I’m a tad upset about this, in much the same way that being engulfed in an inferno might make one a tad warm. There’s nothing to be done for it; this is the way it is, and I will have them for Christmas Day, and that will be fine, and oh yeah this is what I get for being incapable of having a successful marriage after all and excuse me, have you seen my flail, because I think I’m needing a little more self-flagellation over what is essentially a scheduling matter. Because I’m so logical. Yay me!

And while we’re being honest, allow me to point out that last year–our first “broken home” Christmas–my children’s heads spun around so many times that I actually told them I was glad their father was coming to get them for the day, because they were ungrateful brats and I couldn’t stand to look at them. Yes. Then I realized what I’d just said and I dissolved in a puddle of tears and their heads stopped rotating long enough for them to awkwardly pat me and offer promises that they would never argue again. Good times. Too bad I can’t do that again this year, huh??

In the meantime, I will distract myself from the impending Holiday That Makes Me Regret Just About Everything I’ve Ever Done But Really Still Makes Me Want To Be Grateful (oh Christmas, you dichotomous fiend!) with all of the Stuff I Need To Do Before Christmas. Unfortunately, this is the time of year when my brain hits overload and I start forgetting my own name.

In life, there is yin and there is yang. One can give and one can take. For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. Never is this more apparent than in the second half of December.

I got my Christmas cards designed, ordered and sent out.
… and found myself running around my house a few days later in jeans and a bra, tearing apart every single storage closet, because I know I bought more deodorant and I couldn’t find it anywhere. I still haven’t found it, and I refuse to buy more, because it’s here somewhere. (In the meantime I am using an inferior scent. Woe is me.) (Don’t tell me these events are unrelated. I overrode the storage information with the card information, I tell you.)

I carefully conferred with my ex on gifts for the children.
… and then found a great deal on something and bought it and put it away for Chickadee’s birthday (because I’m done Christmas shopping), only to have the ex remind me that he already bought that. Oops.

I sat down and went through several months of paperwork and filing.
… and realized that the whole money-management-through-denial thing only works for so long. Heckuva time of year for me to get that all worked out, dontcha think?

I undertook several baking projects, and have several more planned.
… though my current track record with actually managing to produce a balanced meal that the children will eat is abysmal and getting worse.

I am busily planning gifts for friends, teachers, etc.
… and I still spend much (most) of my time alone. That doesn’t always bother me… but this time of year? Let’s just say sometimes it feels more elective than others. Right now it doesn’t feel so great.

And so on. Come on over to my house! We’re a barrel of fun, here! Good thing we have cookies, I guess….


  1. Ben

    Cookies sound great! Thanks.

    Oh, wait, sorry, um… the last thing you need is another whiny kid to get in your way…

    Sorry things seem so sucky right now. (Is that a word? “now?” It seems like a good one) Things will be so much better in (looking at calendar) about 15 days.

  2. L.

    Eee. My first note ever to The One and Only Miss WouldaCouldaShoulda! :) I’ll only come to your house if you have Snickerdoodles though. Those are the only cookies that I don’t have a recipe for.

  3. RockStar Mommy

    I haven’t had enough time to breathe properly since the second week of the month started. I love Christmas, but I just can’t wait for it to be over.

    And my heart is totally breaking for Chickadee’s sticker heartache – even though it was she who tore them up. But still, that story seems to parallel many aspects of my life.

  4. Janet

    I’m only a bottle of beaujolais nouveau and a platter of sushi away, Mir :-)

  5. alektra

    Hey, you. It’s ok. This is the season that drives people insane. It makes them have all sorts of problems, and generally only makes therapists richer. You’re not unique, and it’s one of those times that it’s nice to be similar to other people.

    As for the holidays and being alone, well, I for one think you have a TON of fans who think the world of you. Few have the power you do to have such a legion of readers who enjoy just reading your thoughts on life. You are a fantastic person, and although this might not help enough during Christmas, please remember that you’re great, your kids are great, and 2005 will find you some of that good karma you DO deserve.

  6. Sheryl

    I hope you are planning something special for you to do on Christmas Eve. (((hugs)))

  7. Betsy

    Been there, did that, survived to tell the tale. To almost all of it, it seems – right down to the scavenging of the house for the deodorant that I knew was around here *somewhere*.

    I know this sounds like a cliche, but I’m heading into my fourth holiday season of this and it does get easier. Honest. Or at least, easier to bear, if that makes sense.

    And in the meantime – come over to my house and we can be Scrooge-like together!

  8. Steve

    And yet…and yet…

    You still had time to write your usual excellent blogpost. So things can’t be all that bad.

  9. janie

    Next year will be my year to miss Christmas Eve and morning for the first time in my kids lives. It’s over a year away, and I find myself depressed about it. And yes, all 5 of my rugrats are bouncing off the beds, talking til midnight, and up at the crack of dawn. Oh the joys of Christmas with children. But that is what raw cookie dough is for, always makes me feel better.

  10. Erin

    Hey Mir! I love love love the new design! And I’m sorry I’m been such a poo-head (yes, that IS a word…and you have children, so you should know it!) about posting lately. I suck! Anyways, everything looks great!!

  11. Carmen

    Mir, send me your address and I’ll send Chickadee some groovy new stickers. Life just isn’t the same without stickers.

    I’ve found that really cold chocolate cookie dough, good chocolate cake, or some godiva ice cream – chocolate also, are we sensing a theme here? – are the only things to help me through this time of year.

  12. Samantha

    Mir! Would it make you feel better to know that last night, as I helped a good friend paint, I said, ‘This makes me think of Mir! She is a painting expert!’

    I think we’re all a little Grumply at this time of the year, but we just have to try to catch the moments of light. Sending you lots of bloggy hugs.

  13. nina

    I am also without my kidlet for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day this year, and I must say, it does suck. We even invited my ex- to my parents’ house hoping that was one way around the situation, but he refuses to go. At least the kidlet is excited about having two Christmases. Hang in there.

  14. emily

    The ex and I alternate Christmases, and the years when my kids aren’t with me, we do Christmas Eve’s Eve, where we go to bed on the 23rd and act like it’s Christmas the next morning, then he picks them up and they go have their regular Christmas.

    We are all big fans of Eve’s Eve, and having a real name for it makes it seem extra-special.

  15. littlemiss

    Awww…Well, at least you have a sense of humor about things…:)


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