A few weeks ago I wrote about not feeling very holly jolly and how this year just felt so different. I didn’t know why, it just didn’t feel like the holidays. I figured out why.
Holidays were a big deal growing up. My mom went all out to the best of her abilities as a single mother. We always visited family and celebrated on multiple days to fit all our family in. When I met Tom we added his family into our holiday runaround. We had our son young, so I went from being a kid myself enjoying the holidays without a care in the world. It wasn’t about me anymore though, it was about my son and watching him open presents on Christmas. As the years went on the trips around Christmas to visit family got smaller. It is now celebrating at home and heading to my moms. Things are different.
It dawned on me. I literally went from being a kid to being a mom so fast that the Christmas spirit never died. It was still the most exciting thing to me. This year when I wasn’t feeling very holly jolly, I couldn’t figure out why. Nothing has changed, but everything has changed. My kids are getting older, which means they are no longer interested in the things they always have been. Things are slowly changing, but they feel like they are changing so fast. That’s why it was hard to feel holly jolly. I was the only one excited for all the baking, decorating, wrapping, and looking at lights. It doesn’t feel the same when they’re not as excited.
They still love the holidays of course, but they’re not as interested. This year when we set up our tree and I was so excited for us to decorate, they weren’t. My daughter put about 10 ornaments on the tree and called it a day, while my son put on one and asked if I still had the little gingerbread man he made 10 years ago. Of course I do. I have all the ornaments they have made over the years. Gone are the days of the excitement for the little things. They didn’t even seem to care about the elf on the shelf this year, until it became a constant game of hide and seek.
I was looking forward to the little things that made the holidays fun, but those days are over. The days of decorating together, baking, looking at lights, and making candy cane reindeer. My husband said it best, “you don’t do this for the kids, you do it for you.” I didn’t want to believe him, but he’s right. I always thought I did those things because they were for the kids. Maybe, just maybe they were actually for me. Maybe the kids never really cared about the little things? Either way, I’m feeling a little more holly jolly these days as I don’t care if they want to bake or look at lights or decorate because I do. I will always do those things, so someday they enjoy doing those things for their families.