Tuesday, December 20, 2011

A Christmas Story

What I'm about to tell you is a true story. A few years back, one Christmas day, someone (who shall not be named) told me that I'll never understand the true joy of Christmas until I see my own children opening their presents on Christmas morning. After I punched them in the face*, I gave that idea some thought. Is it true? Can Christmas only be truly appreciated when you have children? After thinking about this over the years, I've come up with an answer: NO. Christmas can be wonderful even without children.

Do I want kids? So very much! Do I think Christmas would be even better with kids? Yeah, I do. I won't deny it. Is Christmas a bunch of garbage without kids? No way! Just get that out of your head right now!!

As a single adult, I've found other ways to enjoy Christmas. For one thing, I sorta spoil my nieces and nephews, so I guess I can kind of get a piece of that "joy I'll never understand without my own children" from them.

But I also just like to focus on the happiness part of Christmas with or without kids. The part where you make gifts for those you love, and bake and bake and bake to fatten them up for winter. The part where you watch "White Christmas" and then watch the weather reports closely hoping for an actual white Christmas. The part where you decorate your Christmas tree and put up decorations and lights, and remember happy Christmases from the past. The part where you visit old friends and get together with extended family and play games and laugh. The part where you sing Christmas songs in church, and remember the birth of Christ.

In other words, though the holiday season can be hard for single people, it can also be just fine. It can even be awesome. It's just a matter of focusing on what you do have, and thinking of others. Oh, and on sugar. Some day, I hope to have children of my own. But until then, it is possible to understand the true joy of Christmas. I promise.

*Totally kidding!


T. Taylor Joo said...

It's Christmas already? I didn't get the memo.

Katherine said...

I agree that Christmas can be fun no matter what your stage of life. Why should being single equal crappy Christmas? Thanks for this post. It's good to be reassured that just 'cause I'm single I'm not alone in loving and truly enjoying Christmas, kids or no!

violet50 said...

I totally agree! Christmas is what you feel inside. And it's about giving and sharing and feeling joy. You can do that at any stage of life. Kids grow up and spouses die but that doesn't mean that Christmas is over for those people. And there are people who never have kids. Your friend has a very closed view of life.

Laurie Higgins said...

I'm not the idiot that made the comment about Christmas meaning nothing without children, am I? There are times I envy those who don't get jostled out of bed on Christmas morning at 5:30am! Anyway, Christmas is about creating traditions...all the wonderful things you blogged about. Have a Merry Christmas (and you are welcome to come over for the Christmas morning kid wake up call-that would be a great tradition for you!).
love ya

Elizabeth Downie said...

Haha, Laurie, NO! You would never say anything like that!! You're too funny.

Most of my married w/children friends are incredibly sensitive to my situation. This post doesn't apply to ANYone who reads this blog (....that I know of).

Love you too and Merry Christmas!

lizzie mc.- said...

Laurie, I'm relieved to. Although peppermint is appropriate this time of year, peppermint shoes never are. Glad I didn't suffer from foot in mouth for this one. Isn't it all about Christ. The hope he gives is for bond and free, male and female, young and old. But for all my peppermint shoe moments that I have had, I'm grateful for that Savior!

Sui Sin Far said...

Last year putting together a Christmas party for my 7th graders was a totally different experience. They all brought in one gift for another student (normal sized gifts like a football or something not small) and something to potluck. I made them give me everything and put it in a different room. I made them work for an hour. I sent them out to play basketball and I set everything up while they were gone. They walked in to see a pile of presents surrounded by a ton of food, and the look on their faces was amazing. It's really fun to give little gifts and see people enjoy them. The thing is that kids enjoy them so honestly and exuberantly. Yeah, kids make Christmas fun but I really don't think they have to be your kids.