I love this time of year… the lights, the snow, the decorations, the mood, the stories, the crafts…
I hate the stress. I don’t know why, but the holidays have always been a source of stress for me. Even as a young child I would retreat from parties or actually feel physically ill after an hour or two. I am not a fan of crowds, they make me quite anxious, but I can manage well when it comes to friends.
The expectations…or perceived expectations are a big problem for me now. I enjoy having friends over, but when it comes to family I always feel like there is criticism. It might not be overt, and it might not even really be there consciously, but I always feel like it is. And of course I expect it to happen so I am often defensive.
What makes it hard is that no one (family wise) is used to having a lot of kids around. One child, two maybe… but with four kids in the house, things are rarely quiet. Throw in the excitement of a holiday, and having people over who are adults then there is mayhem.
I say adults because when there are other families over it is so much easier. With families, there may be double the amount of people but the kids are off and having fun on their own, we might not even see them for periods of time, but when just adults are over, the adults talk and the kids want attention, negative or positive, and when you have a very strong willed child around it makes things even harder.. It feels like whatever their behaviour is at the time is a direct reflection on our parenting and then it almost always leads to some topic that they don’t agree with…
This year there was an added stress to the holidays.
My mom and Grandmother came over on Xmas eve an we had a great time. We were supposed to head to my grandmother’s house on Xmas day as my uncle Marc was preparing a traditional Supper. However, when my mom and grandmother got home they found my uncle unconscious. My mom took his blood sugar and it was so high that it was not registering. They called 911 and he went into Coma, his body temp was 88, and his blood sugar was 64. His kidneys stopped working and he stopped breathing and needed to be put onto a ventilator. He was in bad enough shape that we were pretty unsure if he would survive or not and I headed to the hospital to be with my family. It was a very weird atmosphere to be there on Xmas day with a Santa Clause and an accordion player visiting the emergency room and people laughing and wishing each other Merry Xmas while he lay in a Coma.It has been a rough few days but finally we had a bit of hope today and he is starting to recover though he has a long road ahead and there are still many uncertainties.
Now, Simon will be going to work for two days, then we will Welcome the new year and then head to the Winter Unschooling gathering where we will be hanging out with like minded families for 4 days.
I have a feeling that it will be a great ending to the stress of the holidays…
I’m so sorry to hear that your uncle is not doing well (though it sounds like he is a little better) and that you spent xmas day in the hospital. I hope that the new year will start off on the right foot and there will be more good news to come 🙂 Big hugs to all of you