Thursday, January 13, 2011

Twelfth Night... um, I mean Eighteenth Night?

I have a confession to make.  I didn't take my Christmas tree(s) down until Tuesday of this week.  It's not because I'm lazy (though that's true, too).  It's just that I'm mourning the end of the holidays.

D was a willing partner in this.  By our own tradition, we're supposed to take our Christmas tree down on Twelfth Night.  Though there is some dispute about the actual date of Twelfth Night, we want to prolong our enjoyment of the holiday season, so that means our trees don't come down until the end of the Twelfth Day of Christmas - January 5th.  Except this year that fell on a Wednesday, and I said to D, "Can't we just leave them up to enjoy through Friday?"  I'm not sure I even finished the sentence before he readily agreed.  Then Friday became Saturday, became Sunday (because we might as well enjoy them through the weekend), became Monday and those trees finally came down on Tuesday.  I was really sad while I was packing up the ornaments.  Our little home lost a bit of its glow, literally and figuratively, when the shining trees were gone. Now we make it a game as we drive down the lane to our home... which of our neighbors still have Christmas decorations up tonight?  We celebrate each one.  Power to my Christmas-lovin' peeps!

Tomorrow is my birthday.  I'll turn 29 for the 10th time.  It's the culmination of the my own personal holiday season, but I am just not feeling it this year.  Perhaps when I wake tomorrow, I'll get in the spirit.  But at the moment I don't feel much like celebrating.

In the blogosphere, people are summing up 2010.  Some people are glad to see the back of it; some have fantastic memories to savor.  People are welcoming the clean slate of the coming year and grabbing 2011 by the balls.  Me, not so much.

I usually coast through my existence, feeling generally blessed.  I have a good life really.  Do I wish some things were different?  Sure, but it's just easier to be content with my lot.  However, the Navel-Gazing holiday (as Ironic Mom so eloquently dubbed it) made me stop and look back at the year and get all discontented crankypants.

I remember discussing 2010 at the beginning of the year.  Big things were going to go down.  But now I look back on it and feel like the months ticked by unnoticed and unproductively.  If there is one word I think of when it comes to 2010, it is stasis.

I didn't travel; we didn't finish the remodel or make any other of the big changes we wanted to; I'm not yet a mother; I'm running out of time to make the decision to try to be a mother; I'm worried the decision has already been made for me by Father Time.   


The interesting thing is, in 2010, I got a great new job in which I happen to be working with a couple of great old coworkers.  Best of both worlds.  But even reminding myself of that isn't enough to bring me out of the funk.  Instead I'm bemoaning the fact that I'm too busy to take the day off and make a big deal about my birthday.  I'll just go in to the office like any other regular day.  And now I'm not even working with some of my besties that made it fun to be at work on "my" day.

I'm sure I'll soon be over throwing myself my own personal pity party.  D has promised me a special birthday dinner and I do love that man's cooking.  Birthday cards and electronic best wishes have already started rolling in.  Tomorrow is a new day.  My day. 

I once read a profound thought by a woman who had survived breast cancer.  She said that, after dreading her birthdays for years as she got older, once she survived her illness she wore birthdays like a badge of pride.  She'd enjoyed another year on this earth - good, bad or indifferent, that is something worth celebrating.  I hope it doesn't take something so harrowing to make me realize the same thing.