Holiday Hangover

I imagine a lot of folks are suffering from holiday hangover today and the amount of eggnog imbibed has nothing to do with it. We spent months shopping, wrapping, decorating, baking, mailing Christmas cards, and now it’s over.

Thank goodness!

The last few years I haven’t gone overboard with Christmas. I used to do the Martha Stewart thing, bringing in fresh pine, making potpourri, baking dozens of cookies, and making handmade gifts. But the stress of getting everything ready for Christmas resulted in me not enjoying the day. One year, after all the gifts were opened my niece commented “Only 364 days until next Christmas.” I became homicidal. But I was too exhausted to act on it. Lucky for her.

For the last two years, I haven’t even decorated the house. The dust on the decorations stored in the basement make my eyes water and my nose run. I haven’t baked because my mid-forties metabolism (okay, LATE forties metabolism) has suddenly made me gain weight by simply looking at the pictures in the cookbook. And my writing has taken up all the time I used to designate for playing Santa’s elf and making gifts. Besides, everyone seems as pleased (or more so) with the gift cards than with a jar of homemade scented bath salts.

But I am not a Scrooge. Far from it. I enjoy the season and I love spending Christmas day with my family watching everyone tear into the mountain of gifts at my nephew and niece’s house, even though we opted out of the gift exchange about six grand-nephews and grand-nieces ago.

Since we fundamentally celebrate a minimalist Christmas, you might expect that I wouldn’t suffer the holiday hangover on this morning after. Wrong.

It’s a weird kind of day, this day after Christmas. Part of me feels like I should get back into the normal routine and yet I can’t quite tell what day of the week it is. Is it Monday? Tuesday? The yoga center is closed for the holidays so there are no classes to plan. I’m taking that un-planned vacation from working on the novel. And the Steelers are definitely out of the play-offs (although the way they’ve played this year, I have to wonder why everyone seems so surprised by the news).

So I feel a little lost today. I have things to do. Like organize my receipts for tax season. Like balance my checkbook. Like wash that huge pile of laundry. Yet the body and mind are resisting the idea of anything resembling work.

I find myself thinking maybe next year I’ll drag out the tree and the decorations again. Maybe I’ll buy something other than gift cards to put under that tree. Maybe…

I mean, if I feel this tired when I didn’t really do anything, maybe I should forget the minimalist approach and EARN my exhaustion.

It sounds like a good plan now that it’s 364 days away. Check back in 360 days to see how I’m feeling about it.


Joyce said…
I'm feeling a little sluggish myself, but it might be from the bottle and a half of wine I had yesterday.

I haven't baked cookies for two years now, and I don't miss it at all. (I have that late forties metabolism, too.) I try to stay away from the junk (unless you count the booze) as much as possible.

I don't decorate a lot either. We have a nice 4 ft. tree that fits on one of our end tables, and that's enough for me.

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