Christmas is upon us once again and I can feel the stress levels rising inside my own body. This is not how I want to spend the week of Christmas but the To Do List is longer than ever and my mind keeps replaying thoughts of all the things I wish I could do but I just don’t have the time for! This season I am often so overwhelmed I freeze and shut down or end up doing tasks that don’t necessarily need to be done.
It’s easy to feel like you’re not doing enough this time of year.
There’s pressure from all different directions – the traditions in your own family you feel obligated to continue, the invitations and events you’re expected to show up for and the mom guilt cranks up to 1000%. The inner mean voice in you starts talking only making you feel worse. Your social media feed is full of perfectly curated Christmas scenes. Your calendar is so full there’s no time to rest or get in any self-care.
It’s a perfect storm. It feels like a modern mother’s ultimate test of “good enough.”
I’ve been thinking about all the things I feel guilty for and started questioning my own expectations. What am I putting on my own plate? How am I contributing to my own chaos? We have to remember that our kid’s experiences are not our own. Their views and perspectives are much different than ours and they doubtfully feel like they’re missing out. We can’t put our own childhood stories with endings we already know onto their shoulders. Their stories will be different than ours and we have to let them write their own.
What role do you want to play in their story? What do you want them to remember about you in this season? It’s hard to zoom out and look at the big picture with our own kids but we have to do it. You’re the magic maker – I get it. But we have to stop micro-managing the holidays, expecting way too much from everyone including ourselves and remember to make the memories we want to have and the ones our kids will cherish. I promise your kids don’t care if you buy cookies or make them. Or if you wrap every present or don’t.
They are going to remember the smells on Christmas morning. The family around the table on Christmas Eve. Their favorite decoration on their nightstand. Their favorite ornament on the tree. The chaos of unwrapped presents all over the living room. The cousins and friends sharing their gifts. You don’t have to curate anything that doesn’t feel right for YOU. Do what feels easy. Do what feels good. Mom the magic-maker is also mom memory-maker. Let her sit down, be present and enjoy the season a little bit.
Merry Christmas Well Mom family. I hope you have a wonderful holiday. No matter what you do this season, you are enough!