This week: It's the Season to Be Jolly...Edited by: Kitti the Red-nosed Feline
More Newsletters By This Editor
1. About this Newsletter
2. A Word from our Sponsor
3. Letter from the Editor
4. Editor's Picks
5. A Word from Writing.Com
6. Ask & Answer
7. Removal instructions
The holidays are coming. It's time to be merry. But what if you aren't?
This week's Spiritual Newsletter is all about the different ways people experience the holidays.
Kitti the Red-nosed Feline
St. Nicholas has arrived in the Netherlands. In the US, people are thinking of all the things they are thankful for. It's the season to be jolly... but what if you are not? You risk being called Scrooge, or the Grinch. It's almost as if society is willing you to be happy, but if we could feel happy on command, well, that'd be a bit creepy... And we can't.
The pressure to plaster a fake smile on your face can be a significant one. Even outside of the holiday season, some people will call you out if you look anything other than happy and smiley. I remember when I was asked to pick up a few final things before the funeral of a good friend of mine. When I went into town, then, I was not feeling cheerful. A man I'd never met before called out, “Smile, love, it might never happen!” The implication was that there's probably no reason for feeling miserable, completely ignoring the realities of what might be going on in someone's life. During the holiday season the pressure to smile tends to increase and that, too, ignores the many things that people might be going through.
Each holiday season brings with it the memories of previous holiday seasons and, therefore, those memories that include people we have loved and lost, causing us to miss them even more than usual. I remember my gran and I attending the Christmas Eve service at the Salvation Army, and listening to her sing in the choir. I remember St. Nicholas Eve celebrations with my gran, and my great-aunt and great-uncle, all of us sitting in a circle, sharing food, and stories, presents and poetry. Nowadays I live in a different country to my family, so I tend to miss everyone who's still with us as well. But I am fortunate in that I do have family, and we always contact the other, and I do have people to celebrate with here. Some people have lost everyone dear to them, and have nobody to celebrate with, and whilst not everybody's bothered by that, others may feel that they have little to nothing to smile about.
There are people who are in a lot of pain, day in, day out. There are people who are suffering from terrible illnesses. There are those nearing the end of their life. There are also people living in abusive circumstances, with no means of escape. People who are working several jobs in order to keep a roof over their heads and food on the table, wondering how they can possibly afford a merry Christmas for their kids. There are people who live on the streets. There are so many different circumstances people can find themselves in that are not happy, or merry, or jolly. They are not a Scrooge, nor a Grinch if they do not feel festive.
That doesn't mean that you cannot or should not enjoy your festive mood. I love the holiday season. Some years I enjoy it more than others, depending on what is going on in my life, but generally speaking I like that many people do seem happier, and that there's a spirit of goodwill, and that people feel freer to have some fun, wearing elf hats or antlers or what not. During the dark time of the year it is good to have a celebration and I welcome the lights, and signs that humanity is not completely corrupted, not completely without hope. Just, cheer cannot be forced and, therefore, cannot and should not be expected.
People aren't a Scrooge or a Grinch either if they actually enjoy some peace and quiet. I have had years where the thought of a big gathering of friends and family filled me with dread, because I'd had a very busy time of it and all I wanted to do was sleep and relax and to not have to worry about anything. I know that I am far from alone in that.
The holidays, then, are a time of mixed emotions and of mixed hopes and dreams. There is no right way or wrong way to approach them and experience them. Whatever you end up doing, I wish you well.
Kitti the Red-nosed Feline
Some contests and events to inspire you:
Submit an item for consideration in this newsletter!
Have an opinion on what you've read here today? Then send the Editor feedback! Find an item that you think would be perfect for showcasing here? Submit it for consideration in the newsletter!
Don't forget to support our sponsor!
The Spiritual Newsletter Team welcomes any and all questions, suggestions, thoughts and feedback, so please don't hesitate to write in!
Wishing you a week filled with inspiration,
The Spiritual Newsletter Team
To stop receiving this newsletter, click here for your newsletter subscription list. Simply uncheck the box next to any newsletter(s) you wish to cancel and then click to "Submit Changes". You can edit your subscriptions at any time.