December is coming to an end, which means one of the most stressful times of the year is almost over. Congratulations! You made it. However, you may be on the verge of a nervous breakdown, and I see you.
When November 1st rolls around, it’s so exciting! Stores begin decorating with lights, trees are sold, family photos are taken, and it’s still early enough in the season that you aren’t completely over the cold yet. The holidays are approaching and you have a fresh start at traditions, cooking, baking, seeing friends and family, and maybe just maybe you’ll get Christmas cards sent out on time this year.
But then, reality sets in. It’s December 21st and somehow you have nothing done. The house is a mess, you can’t find the kids’ Christmas outfits, you have no idea when you’ll be able to get to the Post Office to mail cards and you just remembered that you’re supposed to bring a meal to a potluck.
I’ve been there. I don’t know a parent who hasn’t. There’s somehow just never enough time in the day. But, I can promise you this- your children don’t care about the stockings being perfectly hung, or each staff member at school getting a polished platter of cookies, or even...the best toy on their wishlist.
All they want is you. They want your presence rather than your presents and for you to look them in the eyes with the love you have in your heart for them and say, “I love you, buddy. Merry Christmas! Let’s go play together”. That’s it. That’s all they want. Do they have a toy list? Sure. But it’s because we make them believe they have to have one. What if, this holiday, we gathered around and just enjoyed one another. How much cheaper would that be? How much stress would that prevent?
So...look mamas. I know you feel like you want to do it all and that nothing is going right. Toss the laundry in a basket, pop some take n bake cookies in the oven and watch a movie with your kids. Go sleeding! Make a gingerbread house, or don’t! Just be. Be with them. Those are the things they will cherish and remember; not whether or not you had the best potluck dish or got the best gifts.
Give yourself grace and love. Isn’t that what this season is all about?