It seems like every year when Christmas rolls around, instead of being excited I’m full of dread. Mostly because it’s the time of year when I’m most reminded of how broke I always am. I always have big ideas about what I want to get everyone, it’s just my budget is never enough to help these ideas come to fruition. I think many people can identify with this feeling. When I was younger and my dad was such a grouch about Christmas I never understood it, but now I’m sad to say I do.
It’s hard for me to think of presents when I haven’t had a paycheck in three months and my bills are all backed up. I can’t get in the holiday spirit if I’m worried about my late car payments. But one lady earlier in the week simply said “merry christmas” to me with such gratitude in her voice that I felt a little twinge in my cold shrunken Grinch heart. Also, she had just told me she sleeps in her car so that kind of put things in perspective for me. Living in a too cold, delapidated apartment with a rodent living under the stove, is at least better than living in a car.
There have been other small kindnesses that people have done for me lately which have helped to bring me around. I came in to work one day last week to see a blue stocking taped to the wall above my desk and it contained some Christmas socks! I left the stocking at work since that is where I need the most cheer and to my surprise a pair of gloves appeared inside the stocking the following week.
The mint flavored Hershey’ kisses I found sitting by my keyboard and the Christmas card I received in the mail also made me smile. I began to realize that everyone around me is having a hard time this year but what really matters is how you choose to deal with it. Christmas is coming next week no matter how much I wish I still had another month; I can either be grumpy about it or do the best I can with what I have.