Hatin' on the Holidays

I have always had this big hole in me… somewhat of a theoretical hole as opposed to a visible “hole” – but there, still the same. I don’t remember much of my dad. He left when I was three. I didn’t see him again – ever. I do remember our last Christmas together as a family. Santa brought me oranges in my stocking. I also got a cardboard kitchen set – kid sized. It had a refrigerator, stove, and a sink. I guess it was the old time equivalent to Fisher Price toys of today. We didn’t have the bright colored plastic stuff, but there was cardboard a-plenty!

I remember coming downstairs on Christmas morning, very, very early. I looked down into the living room, and there were so many presents, that I couldn’t believe it. I remember running around all day, chasing my brother, bothering our parents, and having a pretty good day. I also remember my mom and dad arguing a lot, but it didn’t seem to matter much. I’m not sure if that was the status quo or if the toys muted the tension.

I think that perhaps this is the link to my hating the holidays so much. When we were a family, things were pretty good. The following Christmas was full of sorrow and loneliness, and no word from my dad. As was the next, and next and so on.

Sometimes I look at my boys, playing with their dad that loves them so much…and I feel actual resentment toward them or Todd, or someone. I feel left out and lonely and jealous of a relationship I will never experience or understand. I know it makes no sense, and I try not to think about it. But it is there. I don’t think it is a visible thing, and it certainly doesn’t consume me, but it lingers – stings a little. That same hole is there and it is real in some way.

I do love the relationship I have with my kids, all four of them. I love how all of us spend time together as a family. I think that my past experiences have made me more focused on family and traditions, and just being together, enjoying every moment that we have…so good has come out of it. Christmas does seem to be the exception, but I know that I can find things in this holiday that are meaningful and good. I want my kids to have good memories of the holidays – not look back and think about how mom always hated Christmas. I guess making a difference in how I view Christmas starts today – Christmas Eve. And I vow, when I get out of this freaking office, to try and enjoy the next few days.