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Do not fear how love can hurt you
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What Women Want December 2010

30 Nov 2010

I don’t know about you, but somehow Christmas always comes as a surprise to me.

I mean, I look forward to it for ages, for the relaxation, the giving (and hopefully receiving) of presents, the festive spirit, the free-flowing champagne ... I imagine it all.

The house is spring-cleaned by then and is a welcoming, peaceful and stunningly decorated haven where my guests walk through the door into a Mecca of goodwill. Peace surrounds, accompanied by delightful nibbles, tasteful Christmas carols (stop laughing) and beautifully and creatively wrapped gifts under the tree, the very picture of a wholesome loving family on vacation.

And then, it’s just here. It’s chaos, there’s no time to give careful consideration to exciting and stimulating gifts that are an ethical investment supporting a third world country AND leave no carbon footprint for the kids.

There’s little chance of perusing the country’s finest tailors and tinkerers to order that perfect customised gift for the loving partner who you really want to thank for putting up with you for another year and, as for sourcing the stunning Christmas wrapping theme you had going in your head, well forget it.

It’s red and white snowflake paper again.

The fact that you still have that left-over roll from Christmas last year behind the chest of drawers is just one of the pluses of not having done your spring clean in time. The other plus is, well, you didn’t spring clean.

This year, I’m going to r e l a x. I’m not going to worry that the house still has unpacked boxes from the last move – they make great impromptu seating options for extra guests.

I’m not going to worry that the Christmas tree is the branch that blew out of the gumtree last storm – I’m telling myself it’s a creative take on the traditional pine.

I’m not going to worry that I’m using last year’s wrapping paper again – it’s the gift inside that counts. And I’m not going to worry that the gift for my partner isn’t that rare hand-made item he never knew he wanted until he saw it perfectly wrapped from me – I’m just going to look forward to kissing his lips and telling him I love him. Too bad if he doesn’t want socks and cashews.

And I’m not going to worry that the gift for my child is some plastic toy that probably won’t last past Boxing Day and doesn’t support a third world country – I’m going to hold him in my arms and squeeze those chubby cheeks and just be grateful we don’t live in a third world country.

Today I’m going to make a cash donation to charity, and feel fine about shopping at Kmart.

The thing about Christmas is, it isn’t about the wrapping and the trimming and the presents. It’s about love and gratitude.

Don’t get me wrong, having the perfect dress to wear to sit at the perfect Christmas table and feast, with all the perfect gifts and perfect guests would be wonderful, and each year I will aspire to it.

All I’m saying is that Christmas spirit is about who you are, not how your house looks, and peace comes from within and moves through you to touch others.   It’s not delivered by the perfect Bing Crosby Christmas CD.

Dear readers, have a wonderful Christmas, a safe and happy new year, and know how grateful I have been to have your readership for two years and how much I love writing to you.   Thank you, and Merry Christmas

Abby xx

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Comments

  • New York Bankruptcy Lawyer at 7:15am on 17/12/10

    Abby,
    Thank you and Merry Christmas to you too! I try to do Spring cleaning but maybe just hiring a maid for one day a year to do the Spring cleaning for me would be a good idea.  We have less than two weeks to Christmas and I’ve not bought any presents yet.  I’m not going to worry I’m just going to enjoy. Stefanie H

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