Blessed Be the Chaos


Country MoonWith the exception of a few, most people look forward to the holidays. It’s a time to re-connect with family and friends, follow the unwritten law that it's OK to eat foods that are forbidden the rest of the year, and generally wind the year down to a slower pace.

Did say slower pace? In recent years, it seems like the opposite is true; stress levels seem to soar during the holidays. Did you know that more suicides occur during this than any other time of the year?

First of all, there's the getting together for the holiday itself. I remember as a kid that there was never any questioning the date or time — on Thanksgiving and Christmas, we always went to Grandma’s house. Period. As an adult, I don’t understand how that worked year after year, because it left no margin for getting together with the other side of the family.

Today, that seems to be the "war" with most all families, mine included. Trying to find a day that the extended family can get together is the next thing to impossible. Unfortunately, this is mainly true because of broken relationships. Not only do you have to consider present family members, but also the ex’s, which can include the in-laws and sometimes the out-laws. Ugh!

Perhaps this is why the holidays are strung out so far. If they can’t get everyone together on Thanksgiving or Christmas Day, many families opt to celebrate the weekend before or after, or sometimes two weeks before or after.

No wonder retailers start bombarding us with Christmas before Halloween ever flies away on its broomstick. I used to pick up all the ingredients for the holiday fruitcake between Christmas and New Year’s. Then, the stores started setting the candied fruits out around Thanksgiving. Now I need to get it before Halloween if I want any at all.

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