Christmas: Holidays, Expectations, Reality

(Also titled: Why I Now Drink Venti Sized  or Emerging from a Fog)

So, we now refer to this holiday season as BF 2011 (Bodily Fluid 2011).  Sweet, right? The past few weeks in our house have been plague ridden with respiratory infections, stomach flu, anti-biotic, and just general ick.  I had planned several posts about this fall.  Then, somehow Halloween turned into Thanksgiving which is now Christmas.  Time is sliding by us.  I refuse to say good riddance to 2011 because that is the year we had our baby boy.  However.  This year has tested us, humbled us, and blessed us.

I used to look down upon those who ordered Venti at Starbucks.  How could someone seriously need all that caffeine? I thought, self-righteously. But now I am one of those with the extra large cup – no decaf – full caf for daily fuel.  Many days this fall just felt like foggy day hours when I could only think to get to my next coffee break.  On pure “function” mode was how we operated for a few months there.  Getting hit with colds and ear infections ruined E man’s sleep, so he often was up in the middle of the night or we were all crashed in bed attempting to get him back to sleep.   We had many great days, but many long nights and even longer days, as a result.

Work. Teaching all day as well as an hour commute each way had its effect on my health.  I’m not proud to admit that I had more than my share of fast food for dinner and lunch, usually on the run.  Workouts fell by the wayside as we attempting to keep our house functioning and rested.  It also had an effect, emotionally.  The perpetual working mom guilt made for some unhappy mornings and serious contemplation of life choices.  (Note: separate post coming on the whole working mom thing.  Luckily – ever so gratefully – I was able to have a full time job with a TON of time flexibility and only had to be gone from my little man 3 full days a week.  Still, it wasn’t easy.) So, as I was operating on Zomombie mode (ha!), my immune system was down.  One bout of food poisoning, one round o pharyngitis, several trips to Urgent Care, one stomach flu, and one trip to the ER led us down a very exhausting path. It’s hard to see your baby sick, and even harder to be sick yourself and try to take care of your baby, too.

Where is this all going? As we emerged on the other side, I kept a diligent eye on ChristmasbreakChristmasbreakalmostalmost.  I had great plans of decorating a sparkling clean home.  Enjoying time to myself and making homemade hot chocolate.  Instead, we careened into break, barely able to eat Saltines and get gross laundry in the washer.

Plans: Why I make them still and subconsciously think I can still be in control?  A question for the ages.  I do this every year with Christmas.  I want it to be just perfect.  I had imagined our family visiting Santa, watching Christmas movies, enjoying the fresh smell of a Christmas tree while eating yummy treats.  Some of that may happen; some of it may not happen. I’m fine with that.

Other family members change plans.  We live too far away for some family to visit.  Florida is warm, not cold and cozy.   Slowly (and I mean molasses slow), I’m learning that it is just about our family time and appreciating our simple, yet essential blessings.  To be healthy (and I mean truly healthy – sure, a cold here or there is healthy), with friends and family is all you can be hopeful for.  I will attempt to set aside the plans, the expectations, and surely, the disappointments to enjoy the time. Reality is no tree, but a happy crawling baby.  Reality is frozen dinners, crawling into bed, used cars, and a full, happy life.  Cue the sappy Christmas music song, here.

Plus, who can’t be happy looking at this little munchkin face?!


1 Comment

Filed under baby, motherhood

One response to “Christmas: Holidays, Expectations, Reality

  1. Sounds good to me. At least we have some time off! But yest next year will be a little better prepped and finished. Merry Christmas!

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