Most women I know don't really like Christmas. It's hugely expensive and if you're in a family, requires a lot of work from the lady of the house. Finding that special present that doesn't break the bank, and just finding the right gifts over and over is downright exhausting. Buying things for people they don't really need or want can be pretty wasteful and disappointing.
I remember years ago, when I was a single mother, or just plain didn't have enough money, Christmas was a huge trauma. I had four siblings who had a total of twelve children between them, and the tradition was that everyone gave a present to everyone! In the weeks before the big day, I would slave over my sewing machine, or trawl through the cheaper shops, trying to produce a special present for eighteen people. Plus, my own children needed something each as well. And we hadn't even thought about Christmas dinner.
I would heave a huge sigh of relief when it was over.
I remember one dreadful year, when the entire family got together at my younger brother's home on boxing day. We had my stepson there, along with my own children. I had made it public to all that he would be there. When the big family present hand-out came, no-one else had remembered to buy this ten year old boy anything. The disappointment on this poor boy's face still haunts me nearly twenty years later.
That's how sad Christmas can be.................
I lost my beautiful sister from breast cancer in '89, and 'sacked' my three remaining siblings around 9 years ago, and that has proved the most freeing thing I could possibly do. You grow up believing that in a family, all you had to do was love them and they would love you back. Not true.
I have my own new family now, filled with people who love honestly and are trustworthy.
My daughters have produced a bunch of grandkids for me to fuss over, and they have great partners who like and respect me and my lovely man.
We also have others who are our 'surrogate' family, and we trust how they will treat us from years of solid friendship.
I miss what our family could have been, but not what it became.
Christmas will be very special this year, and although I haven't bought all my presents yet, I am really looking forward to it.