I used to love Christmas, and on some level I still do. The spirit in everyone of giving, love, and generosity. Complete strangers saying hello, open doors for one another, and smiling, something often much to rare in North America. However, being back home, I beginning to remember why Christmas is also a time not so wonderful.
The whole family is home for Christmas, and all the tensions that come with that. The tension saturated silence between my brother and I fills the air every time both of us are in the same room. To start up a conversation would be tragic, because it would no doubt end in him making fun of me and I being upset. The mother who finds it necessary to criticize and judge every little thing: "you smell", "your wearing that?!", "speak up", etc.. There is no end to her love...
And of course, being vegan doesn't help. I am constantly faced with judgement, exasperation at my "eccentric" ways, and people being pissed off that I find eating animal products disgusting...uhh, can you blame me? Your inflicting unnecessary pain on another being, just so that your tongue can be happy, its not even making your body happy. Let alone the horrible environmental impact it has...but I will stop. I don't want to be one of those preachy vegans.
The point is, I love the idea of "Christmas", and the idea of happy family time, yet when it comes down to it, its a pain in the butt. Its walking on peanut-shells, choosing awkward silences over broken hearts, and feelings attacked and crushed over and over and over again. Sorry to be doom and gloom on Christmas eve! I just wanted to bring reality to the for-front and comfort anyone out there that is not having the "perfect" Christmas that you are not alone, and in fact, the "perfect" Christmas, I highly doubt even exists!