November 23, 2011

The Holidays Are Depressing

I hate the holidays. Yup, it’s true. I really don’t want to be That Guy who complains about them but I can’t help it. The holidays make me sad and think about the future when my parents are gone and what if I don’t have my own family already and where will I go and blah, blah, blah.

To me, the holidays are a reminder of how much things have changed. We all know that Christmas can lose its magic when you get older. You stop believing in Santa Claus and stop caring so much about gifts. Instead of being an exciting time, it becomes one that’s met with dread, excess calories, and financial strain. You run away from your family problems for 364 days a year and for one (or two if you’re going home for Thanksgiving) you have to face them. You have to see all of your family members and take note of what’s been happening to them. In some cases this can be good. You can be reunited with your favorite cousin, hang out with your awesome grandma. But more often than not, it feels like a bummer.

The holidays remind me of what’s gone missing. Rather than being a celebration of what we have, it almost feels like a memoriam. This has a lot to do with the way I view things obviously. I’m sure most of my family members would disagree with this statement, which is fair, but I’m at an age of transition. My cousins are building their own family, my grandmother—the matriarch—is getting older and the future is uncertain. It all begs the question, “Who do you want to include in your family?” People are already getting left behind. I’m getting left behind.

The holidays stand as a marker for where you are in life. Do you have a boyfriend? Do you have a great job? Are you happy? These questions are in your face constantly and you can’t avoid them. If you’re having a great year then, yay, the holidays will be the time for you to show everyone how well you’re doing. If not, then get ready to drink. Heavily.

I feel like the holidays are just plain weird for twenty-somethings anyway. Christmas serves a purpose for children and parents, and I’m neither of those. I don’t have a child to create a special Christmas for and I don’t have enough money to buy everyone gifts. It’s awkward. I’m in a grey area age with the holidays. It’s like “Make me five again or give me a kid. Otherwise, can I just sleep through the holidays this year?” TC mark

image – Joe Buckingham