Monday, December 10, 2007

Monday Mish Mash of Melancholy Moodiness

This morning my husband says to me, "Just two more weeks. Just hang on for two more weeks and it will all be over." He is speaking, of course, of this madness we call Christmas. And the next two weeks will be an overwhelming and frantic blur of birthdays (two, my two youngest sons, one tomorrow, one Friday), shopping, basketball games, basketball practices, school parties, shopping, out of town guests, wrapping, cleaning house, Christmas parties (attending, not hosting, I know my limits), travel, shopping and more shopping, and on and on and on.

I hate it.

There may be just two more weeks, but I'm not sure I'll make it. Okay, so that was a something of hyperbole, as I will make it as I do every year. I can't tell you how I love the late morning of December 25 when it is all, finally, over and I can sit and relax and take a deep breath and know I'm done with Christmas for another 350 or so days.

Yes, I'm melancholy. I'm moody. And I'm a Grinch. I don't like being this way, really I don't, especially when my Grinchi-ness overflows to outbursts of frustration, usually marked by tears. No joy, only stress and worry as I forget the wonder of God becoming flesh and dwelling among us.

This year I'd hoped it'd be better. I've tried so hard to make things easier and smoother. But in those very efforts I've only found a different stress.

Today I'm begging God for wisdom, yes wisdom, as I shop and make preparations for birthdays and Christmas alike. I ask for peace of mind and calmness of spirit. I ask that love mark all I do--love for my Savior and love for those I seek to serve. I pray to remember Jesus, and to forget all my selfish, self-centered, self-pitying whining.

You may wonder why, with so much I have to do, why I take the time to sit at the computer and waste your time and mine with such drivel. It's because I don't think I'm alone. I think we all struggle with the false gods of Christmas: materialism and perfectionism and busyness and stress.

Together, let's agree to follow hard after Jesus, remembering and worshiping...even in the frantic madness of Christmas. Nothing is too hard for Him, even granting peace in the midst of the storm!

Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace and goodwill to stressed out, overwhelmed moms everywhere!

9 comments:

  1. Praying for you and the frenzy right now. May God give you peace and joy dear one!

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  2. Oh Lisa,
    I can so relate. Your time spent here writing out your thoughts is not a waste of time. Oh how I wish I could just sit down with you and have a cup of coffee or tea and just talk.
    I appreciate so much what you share. It is the perfectionism and the need to do EVERYTHING that seems to consume me. I am slowly realizing that less is a whole lot more.

    Blessings to you today!

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  3. Amen to all the above.

    I happen to be reading "Skipping Christmas" by John Grisham and it's already given me the courage to say NO. I said no this morning to a family reunion this Sunday (Who in their right mind would schedule something like that at this time of year?) and told my sister-in-law that we wouldn't be coming for Christmas this year but spending a quiet one at home. I really want Haley to know what we celebrate at this time and it's so gotten lost in the commercialism of it all. And all it does for me is put me in a foul mood!!
    Love ya, friend,
    KC

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  4. I know how you feel. This weekend we had a dress rehersal, two plays, two basketball games and my father's birthday celebration. And my husband worked all weekend. Every year, it's the same struggle. We've always spent Christmas morning at our own home with just our immediate family. Every other Christmas we travel to Georgia on the 26th, return on January 2nd and are back to school and work on the 3rd. This year, we're leaving on December 27th instead. Ahhhhh. A recovery day before the family trip. My husband is also taking off work until January 7th. Ahhhhh. More recovery after the family trip. One thing to consider for next year - My daughter's birthday is November 20th, just a few days before Thanksgiving. We always schedule her "friend" party one to two weeks prior (before the holidays really get started) and then have a small family celebration on her actual birthday. I mean small. Immediate family, cake for dessert (or breakfast!). One present. She loves it because it's like having two birthdays. Remember: Even the Proverbs 31 woman had servants.

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  5. I know how you feel. I SO enjoy Christmas and the songs, lights, holiday movies, etc. But IN MODERATION.

    And I refuse to make myself crazy trying to achieve the perfect holiday. I let go of Christmas cards several years ago, and haven't looked back. I scaled my Christmas decorations WAY back, and we've declined some invites this year. Christmas dinner is a pot of chili that's been simmering on the stove all day, with a few friends who drop by to fellowship with us. Family gatherings are spread out so that we don't run around like mad.

    Still, I've been a grouch this year (and posted about that today). I'm praying for a new attitude, and I'll add you to my prayer list.

    Blessings,

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  6. This season makes me Grinchy too. Although it has been less this year, it's not entirely gone. (I refused to shop after Dec. 1 and my husband and I are not exchanging gifts this year. We have plenty)

    Thank you for calling a "band together"! We can get through this. And praise God that he is the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow.

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  7. I do hope your day improved - I just posted about my all day pity party and all the fun we had at our house. I am so glad I know that God is loving me through this.

    One thought - I had a friend whose birthday was in mid December and her family always celebrated in June on her Half-Birthday then on her 'real birthday' she got cards and her favorite supper, but no gifts since Christmas was so close. She was overjoyed with the arrangement and is doing the same things for her twins born December 21st. That way they don't get lost in the Christmas shuffle.

    Blessings!
    Heather

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  8. I can relate, Lisa. We have a Christmas day birthday at our house. It really helped to move the party she has with her friends to the end of November. That took a lot of stress off. Have you tried on line shopping? Those who have done it, swear by it. They get everything done in one sitting.

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  9. I've been getting Grinchier each year. I used to love all the glitter and build up to Christmas, and still do to some extent, and I used to put on Christmas music as soon as Nov. 1 rolled around (sooner if my husband wouldn't have laughed at me so much about it), but the past few years as the kids have gotten older, Christmas has been just too stressed, and I'm not even enjoying my music - I still haven't started playing much around here this year. I don't seem to enjoy it nearly as much.

    I so agree with you about needing to take our eyes of the idols you mentioned and focus on Jesus. I pray God grants you the strength (and patience) to endure and the eyes to see and remember His peace and glory!

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