Take a Christmas chill pill

This is probably going to be a bit of a downer, sorry. But I was having a discussion with someone at work a couple of days ago about how much of a let-down Christmas can be. Now that’s not to say I don’t like Christmas, I love Christmas! It’s my favourite time of year, but what we were talking about specifically is Christmas day. We are fed this perfect image of family members, with cheerful faces strained by smiles, sitting around a dinner table full of food all having the best time, but in my opinion, that’s just not true. In fact I don’t know anyone that experiences this ‘idealised’ Christmas either. It’s purely an expectation of the ‘perfect’ Christmas that we’ve been encouraged to believe due to the media and sadly, like with most media related things, we’ll never live up to it.

But I think that’s okay. That let down paves the way for families to create their own Christmases. In my house, we watch Muppets Christmas carol on Christmas Eve, open all the presents before breakfast on Christmas Day and go to family on Boxing Day which ultimately ends in everyone falling asleep in front of the TV, that’s just the way we do it. I’ve told this tradition of my family day to friends and they think it’s utterly ridiculous and they tell me the way their Christmas days go. It’s not perfect; it’s not going to be the cookie cutter representation of ‘Christmas’. The likelihood of Christmas day and Boxing Day being the happiest 48 hours of your life with everything being amazing and hilarious is slim to none.

Christmas shouldn’t be as stressful as everyone perceives it to be. The stress comes from trying to make it perfect! Something WILL go wrong with dinner, Christmas TV may not be as good as last year, you most certainly will have at least one argument with a member of your family and it’s probably guaranteed you’re granddad will fall asleep in front of the TV but just go with it. Enjoy the festive season and for goodness sake just chill out, open your presents and eat too much food.

Worry about the problems in the New Year.

Rachael Atkinson Millmoor

@rmillmoor

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