One of my pet peeves about the holidays is the way that something allegedly designed to be a break from normal life stresses, the joyous celebration of life and renewal and getting through it all together, somehow turns into a kind of sick experiment: Just how much stress can the average person take before they dissolve into a gibbering glob of goo on their kitchen floor?
The DailyOM has an article about this very topic, Serene Celebrations: Avoiding Holiday Stress. I particularly love this bit:
Try to remember that you are unique, which means that your holiday experience need not conform to that of your parents, your neighbors, or the simulated families you see in the media.
Man, if we could just manage that much, think how much better it would be! If we could just manage to be OK with what we can do, and let everybody else be OK with what they can do, and not take or give stress to or from anybody else…maybe we really could have a merry $HOLY_DAY.
Bad hair, dusty mantels, lumpy mashed potatoes and all.
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