Most years at Christmas, since about 2014, I’ve felt like a Scrooge before Christmas. Mind that I don’t act like a jerk about it; I still ask about requests for gifts, purchase some eggnog for the occasion, and bake if the occasion allows it. My spiked gingerbread is the greatest hit among coworkers and family. And usually come Christmas Day, the happy spirit returns as we open gifts and enjoy.
There was none of that this year. The Scrooge part never came; instead, it felt like I was a kid again. I was getting pumped, with proper holiday specials to watch, a Christmas movie I saw under protest, and another that’s an annual tradition. The lights in our neighborhood have been stunning; sometimes we need a bit of commercial happiness to make us cheery. Heck, I even have some Christmas horror stories that I’m keen on analyzing.
I was also giving more gifts. It’s been a surprise when people ask me what I want, since I haven’t thought about it. For me, making others happy was more important. This wasn’t a saintly thing; I wanted to do what I could to combat current misery.
With a pandemic, you see people less often in person, owing to not wanting to be a carrier. I miss that interaction on a regular basis, especially when you are keeping your distance to stop a deadly virus from spreading. That means there is no opportunity for holiday cynicism to creep in since you hear about how people are coping. You take any little joy, including gorgeous decorations on other houses or gingerbread baking fresh in the oven.
It’s also been a weird year, with all of the ups and downs that ensued. We thus do what we can to take the ups. An anonymous commissioner wanting a Cookie Monster mural has been the least strange part of the year.
Happy Christmas to you all, and a happier holidays. We are here, ready to give presents and enjoy them with friends and family. Here is to seeing everyone happy next year, at this time.