Making Sense of Christmas

In my last post, I asked the question, partly from a researcher’s point of view, “Why do we DO Christmas?”  As I was driving around this year gawking at the pretty twinkle lights and singing along with Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire for the 5th time in one short drive, I realized that part of the attraction might just be the build up to something that is  out of our ordinary routine.

We listen to music we don’t ordinarily listen to.  We pull things out of storage boxes that we haven’t looked at all year.  We give and receive gifts, eat yummy treats, get together with family, friends and co-workers, send letters and photos and cards to people we’ve been out of touch with…..what’s not to like?  And there is a ritual to getting ready for Christmas, often a somewhat personal ritual that has grown with us over many years.  We have family traditions that help make us Simpsons or Chens or Johannsons.  It’s part of who we are, and every year we go through these motions to reinforce this part of our identity.  Or do we?

In my first post about this, I was thinking about Christmas letdown.  It’s kind of the elephant in the room that no one wants to talk about.  It’s an often overlooked sign that something might be “wrong with Christmas”.  My purpose here is not to ruin Christmas, but to just think out loud about it here for a few days, and see where it leads me.  I welcome all your thoughts and comments!

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1 Response so far »

  1. 1

    Anita B said,

    Well- Christmas, for sure, involves a lot of unrealistic expectations that set people up for major letdowns. As with everything, we take ourselves along.
    I’m not going to get into the ‘re thinking Christmas’ thing… but it is definitely a time of year that ends in disappointment for a lot of people… because of unrealistic expectations of ourselves and others.
    Did I just repeat myself? Oops! 😉
    Happy New Year… a few weeks late!


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