Since my resetting declaration in the previous post, I've really been thinking about why I feel such pressure and confusion at Christmas, whyI feel tremendous guilt for absolutely no reason, and why it's so hard for me to feel good about receiving gifts. Here are a few things I think may play a role in my weirdness.
- I was very poor growing up. Heck, money's still damn tight right now. But I remember my mom's struggle to get us gifts, and how guilty I felt every year because of seeing how guilty she felt. And because I've always had to struggle to make the money stretch, I figure everybody else is in the same boat. Hence,
- I feel I don't deserve to receive gifts. Or to have people care about me. Or to breathe. Don't get me wrong, I'm not suffering on a daily basis with this like I used to. I think that Christmas coming only once a year, and me trying to just put my head down and get through, has stunted the work I've done at Christmastime.
- I've never been very good at parties in general. Besides Christmas parties I also avoid birthday parties and cookouts and masquerades. I could fill a book with my party-disaster stories. It's not only other people's parties. Every party I've ever had flopped. Hugely.
- I feel like there are some Commandments of Social Behavior that everybody else received at birth, but I didn't.
I'm sure there's a lot more, but that's all I'm willing to look at right now.