Let’s just get this out of the way: I hate Christmas.
Not because of any underlying hatred of religion or an elaborate attempt to eliminate the “reason for the season.” I hate all holidays, Christmas just seems to be the pinnacle of them all. It’s one you can’t escape unless you own an island and ban visitors and Christmas carols and mistletoe.
I’m not totally Scroogy, I do buy presents and give them to people I like. Cards for people I know and care to keep in contact with on a fairly regular basis.
I’ll even decorate my house because, let’s face it, a tree is like a giant evergreen Glade plug-in, lasts longer and gets covered in pretty lights. My mantle may even be described as “decorated.”
But even more than the overdriven commercialism, core compromises of character and the general bullshit of it all is the reminder that a single person – most often a single woman – is the last true pariah.
I won’t be spending Christmas Eve or Christmas Day with my family. They have plans out of town, I don’t particular like my relatives here in town (ones that my Grandpa will be seeing) and well, I work nearly 365 days a year. So between working 8 hours on Christmas Eve, probably on Christmas Day and having no extra cash to drive anywhere if I wanted to, I’ll probably be alone that day.
No biggie. To me anyways.
But to the prying co-worker, the casual acquaintance, even the nosy store clerk this is terms for a pity fest.
“You won’t have a turkey or ham or even a chicken? Awwwww”
“But who will fill your stocking? Poor Kelly.”
Please. I eat 90% of my meals in a given year at home. Aside from any yet to be discovered ghosts those meals are eaten alone. Yet now, I am to be pitied, to be glanced at whilst sighing.
Well that’s not really societal rejection, you might say. Please, let me continue.
My worst moments, the ones where I resist the urge to roll my eyes and sucker punch someone, are the conversations around the holiday traditions.
“Oh well, I didn’t really decorate when I was single, there really wasn’t a point. And it wasn’t until I had children that Christmas became truly meaningful.”
Really? Thank you for sharing. Now shut up.
“Of course you can stay within a reasonable budget and finish shopping early; it’s so easy when you’re single. Just wait until you’re married, you’ll see how it really is!”
Again, kindly shut it.
The overwhelming opinion to those who persist in giving their view of how the month of December “should be” for anyone with a close nuclear family is that you will only see how worthless your time, efforts and life is once you’ve left behind singledom.
Well this year I don’t have to buy a tchotchke for a mother in law who hates my guts or travel when I don’t want to and see family out of a sense of obligation. There is currently one present under my tree and the tag reads “To Kelly From Costco” and I know I will love it. I’m not going to be eating sickenly sweet treats or trying anyone’s jello salad. I’m going to enjoy a day of peace, relax and crack open a bottle of wine.
If you want to do all those other things, cool. But don’t look down on my holiday because it does not resemble yours. And kindly do not shove whatever candy thing you made last weekend under my nose.