Planning makes life a whole lot less complicated. It pre-empts many unwanted surprises and helps budget not only money, but also time and energy. Write out a list of e-v-e-r-y-t-h-i-n-g that you feel needs to be accomplished between now and say, January 5, or whatever other date is the end of your holiday season insanity. Think through years past, consult kids’ school and activity calendars and any other source of items that could potentially hit your to-do list.
If you’re one of those superwomen who always “does it all,” this one is going to be tough. However, it’s not only possible, it’s mandatory. If you need to, meditate your way into internalizing that this year is going to be wonderful, but it’s going to be different. It will be a different model of “perfect” because it will include the preservation and promotion of your own sanity and well-being. Repeat after us:
The decorations won’t be exactly as I prefer them, the food won’t be exactly what we’re used to, the parties won’t be identical to every other year… and that’s okay. The holidays will be wonderful.
Here’s where we get to the nitty-gritty. Once you’ve made your peace with the “differentness” of this year, take out that planning list and get down to work delegating.
There are a couple of ways of going about this. While you could decide to just forgo this particular adventure for a year, which might bring your spirits down and disappoint any children involved, you could also decide to ask a local youth group to come by and put the decorations up. If that isn’t an option, how about having your partner and children do it together? Extended family members? Church group? Friendly neighbors? It’s all good, so long as it’s not you.
In some circles, it would take a very strong woman indeed to decide to skip this hallowed escapade entirely. If standing up to disgruntled grandparents isn’t your thing, have no fear. This can also be pared down. Matching outfits need not be shopped for. Don’t we all have a dark blue bottom and white top? Sending a child on a color-matching search through the household closets is a quick way to come up with a color scheme. Want to jazz it up? A set of Santa hats is a quick, cheap, easy solution and yes, the photo can (and will!) be taken in your own home.
Those big feasts associated with this time of year, while rewarding, are a whole lot of work to put together! If you can’t (or don’t want to) arrange to be invited out in order to avoiding hosting, you still have options. Thankfully, ready-made food is available in many forms these days. Supermarkets, take-out from restaurants and hiring an in-house chef are all options. If budgets don’t allow for these, make it a potluck, leaving the bulk of cooking pressure to the guests.
Aren’t these aplenty this time of year? While it is by no means necessary to attend every event out there, there will always be some that are non-negotiable. To minimize the damage, take a few minutes to list school, work and community events, then for those requiring preparation, be the first to volunteer and offer whatever is easiest for you to bring. Even if you’re usually the one to bring the fanciest dessert, this year you’re bringing the store-bought apple juice and that’s just fine. Give someone else a turn to spend hours in the kitchen.
The buying, hauling, wrapping… that is a post all on its own…
Put the “happy” into your holidays
So yes, you CAN have a marvelous, joyful holiday season without putting yourself in medical danger. The heavy bleeding caused by uterine fibroids can cause anaemia and that alone is exhausting. Putting in that extra mental effort to minimize physical efforts will calm the whirlwind just enough to direct your energies into taking care of this year’s top priority, which is YOU.