I had dinner with my lovely friend last night; she is a first time mom to a gorgeous four-month-old baby. (Also, she has already lost all her baby weight and looks fantastic, but I’m willing to overlook that amazing, US Weekly-worthy feat and still be friends with her.) We were discussing holiday preparations, and she confessed that she’s feeling epic guilt because she doesn’t think she’s going to manage sending out Christmas cards this year.
To add a bit more context to the story, in addition to parenting a very small infant, during this month of December my friend is throwing a giant holiday party in her home, buying/wrapping gifts for at least a dozen extended family members, taking the baby to see Santa, etc., then flying across the country to be with her family for Christmas, and coordinating the logistics for her return back to work in January. Oh, and just a month or so ago, she sent out about 200 birth announcements for the aforementioned adorable baby.
I think we can all agree she should not waste five more seconds of her life feeling guilty about holiday cards. Yes? Yes.
In fact, it is my strong belief that we should let go of holiday guilt completely this year. Be like Elsa. Just Let It Go. (Are Elsa jokes played out? I don’t care, I still love them.)
I would encourage you to pick one or two holiday traditions that are truly meaningful to you and your children, things that will actually bring you joy, and do only those things. Skip the rest. Seriously, just skip them. Don’t let Martha Stewart Living and Pinterest and your friends’ amazing, elaborate Facebook posts let you feel so pressured to create the perfect holiday for your family that you crack and end up yelling at them and/or crying into your glass of wine while you begrudgingly bake 4 kinds of cookies for the school holiday bake sale.
We put all kinds of pressure on ourselves to be great moms, great wives, great coworkers, great volunteers, etc., and it tends to get a little overwhelming at this time of the year in particular. Heather and I want to remind you that we are pretty sure you are doing a kick-ass job of living your life. We bet you’re going to have a blast with your family this month. So do not be drawn in by the semi-veiled, semi-competitive insanity.
PLUS, if you are able to prioritize, think about what great modeling you’re doing for your kids! What a fabulous thing for them to hear you say, “For the holidays this year, we are going to spend our time on X, Y, and Z, and not worry about A and B. Because I want us to really enjoy X, Y, and Z and not rush through those things!”
Now, on that note, I am off to find a peppermint mocha. Because peppermint mochas are meaningful to me. Enjoy your day, friends.
Erin and Heather