When it’s NOT the Most Wonderful Time of the Year

I was standing in line at the Post Office with packages to mail.  The man in front of me, as he received his receipt from the postal worker said, “Well I won’t bother to wish you happy holidays.  I can’t stand this fake, cheerful crap.”  She nodded.  “Good.  I feel the same way.”

Maybe you know what they feel like.  This could be one of those years when everything seems wrong.  Maybe it’s the first year without someone special around your table.  Or possibly financial stress or the dark cloud of depression have descended upon you and sucked the joy out of the season.  

Although you may feel lonely, you are not alone.  For many, this time of year is something to be endured and survived.  Even though it will pass – as all holidays and seasons do – coping with the season can be challenging.  As you’re waiting for it to be behind you, I suggest you try the ‘One Thread’ practice.

Every day, notice one single thing – one thread – that is pleasing to you.  It could be a breath of fresh air, or the pretty image of shadow on snow.  It could be a song, a sound, a smell, a laugh, a memory.  Look each day for the one pleasant thread that will keep you tethered to this day.  And remember, the new year will be here before you know it.

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4 thoughts on “When it’s NOT the Most Wonderful Time of the Year

  1. David Green

    I like the way you used the Christmas song so ubiquitous at this time of year in the title to your piece. I may have more than a bit of Scrooge in me but I am repelled by forced gaiety at any time of the year as I am with most types of group-think. The harsh part of the holiday “joy” is that it so blithely disenfranchises those who are hurting. There’s so much emphasis placed on celebrating on top of the monetary pressures of the holidays. While I am not a Christian, I respect those who put the faith aspects of the season first. By quietly focusing on the spiritual core of these holidays (Xmas, Chanukah, solstice, Eid, etc.) we can stay attuned to the emotional needs of others who are struggling with loss and other emotional burdens. Its OK to celebrate and it seems to be a basic human need to celebrate but we ought to keep an eye out for those who need quiet support in the midst of the holidays.

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