This was my favorite Christmas song long before I realized it was from Mame:
Mame: Haul out the holly; Put up the tree before my spirit falls again. Fill up the stocking, I may be rushing things, but deck the halls again now. For we need a little Christmas Right this very minute, Candles in the window, Carols at the spinet. Yes, we need a little Christmas Right this very minute. It hasn’t snowed a single flurry, But Santa, dear, we’re in a hurry; So climb down the chimney; Put up the brightest string of lights I’ve ever seen. Slice up the fruitcake; It’s time we hung some tinsel on that evergreen bough. For I’ve grown a little leaner, Grown a little colder, Grown a little sadder, Grown a little older, All: And I need a little angel Sitting on my shoulder, Need a little Christmas now. Mame: Haul out the holly; Well, once I taught you all to live each living day. All: Fill up the stocking, Young Patrick: But Auntie Man, it’s one week from Thanksgiving Day now. All: But we need a little Christmas Right this very minute, Candles in the window, Carols at the spinet. Yes, we need a little Christmas Right this very minute. Agnes: It hasn’t snowed a single flurry, But Santa, dear, we’re in a hurry; Ito: So climb down the chimney; Put up the brightest string of lights I’ve ever seen. All: Slice up the fruitcake; It’s time we hung some tinsel on that evergreen bough. For we need a little music, Need a little laughter, Need a little singing Ringing through the rafter, And we need a little snappy “Happy ever after,” Need a little Christmas now. Need a little Christmas now.
This is my twelfth Christmas without a partner, and yet… I’m happy this year. I have gone to some fun parties, attended a holiday variety show last night, am seeing my favorite band tonight, and am going to another holiday show tomorrow night with a bunch of friends. My mom is coming in town and we’ll be visiting several fancy restaurants. I’ve even swung some days off (my company only gives us one day off for Christmas and since it doesn’t slow down at the workplace, I’ve had some extremely stressful holiday seasons in the past).
I really felt a sea change in my attitude this year. Instead of thinking about everything I didn’t have for yet another year in a row, I found myself looking forward to all the things I was going to do. In essence, it gets better, but I love this Gateway Women post, because it makes such good points about acknowledging one’s grief:
Some of the really hard to manage feelings that come up around Christmas-time are some of the hardest human emotions to deal with – feelings of worthlessness, inferiority, anger, loneliness, futility, isolation and depression. At a time when everyone else seems to be getting into the holiday spirit, feelings like this can make us feel like freaks. However, what these feelings may point to is not that you are a miserable old humbug but that you are grieving. Because we live in a culture that neither recognises nor acknowledges the right of childless women to grieve, we often don’t realise ourselves that that’s what’s going on. If you had lost your family through a tragic accident, nobody (including yourself) would expect you to be able to join in the Christmas celebrations until you had fully grieved your shocking loss. And, frankly, nobody (including yourself) would ever expect Christmas to be slam-dunk easy for you. Our children are, or were, real to us. And we grieve their absence.
Is it the Internet? Am I 42 in real years but 95 in Internet years? Are my ideas of friendship, truth, sincerity, generosity and character “old-fashioned?” Is the difference between “real” friends and “virtual” friends not even a meaningful distinction anymore? Is the “face” in Facebook unnecessary?