Merry Christmas Eve, everyone!
It’s early morning, and I’m getting myself mentally ready to help my mother with the flood of people who will be here in a few hours for breakfast.
Welcome to some of the most difficult days of the year. I understand that a lot of survivors struggle over the holidays, like I do. Even though they’re supposed to be fun, the holidays are also stressful. And that’s for folks who had normal childhoods. I remember some pretty bad Christmases. Coping with painful associations over the holidays is also compounded by being back in contact with family, or with being alone for the holidays, both of which can be painful.
This year, I’m going into Christmas with a different attitude. I mean to reclaim the holidays for myself. I deserve to enjoy them.
Instead of trying to avoid conflicts with my family, I’m going to enforce my boundaries. I’m not going to be bullied. I’m not going to be ignored. I’m going to hold tight to the knowledge that Christmas is about giving gifts, so the fact that I will give a lot more than I receive means that I win. Lol, okay, maybe seeing it as a contest isn’t entirely healthy either. Instead of saying “win” in my head, I’ll say succeed. 😉
Since I’m easily overwhelmed by having a bunch of people around me (I’m extremely introverted, thus get my fill of people a lot faster than most do), I will make sure that there is a clean, quiet space available to me so that I can take breaks from everyone when I need to.
I’m going to enjoy the food, the cookies, and the company of the people who want me around.
I’m also going to have as many of my coping plans in place ahead of time as I can manage.
Merry Christmas, everybody.