I have a little Christmas tradition that I've been keeping up as long as I've lived as the princess of my domain. I find it relaxing, refreshing and freeing. My husband finds it revolting, horrifying and Scrooge-like. What could two peas in a pod possibly disagree on to such a level as this, you ask?
Well, okay. Let me tell you. But you must promise not to yell out "SCROOGE" when you hear it. Promise? Pinkie swear?
Okay, (hushed tones) my tradition is to wake up early on December 26 and take down my Christmas tree and decorations.
HEY! You promised!
Now before you throw up your arms in disgust at my ways, let me explain my point of view. Okay, here's my main point: Christmas is OVER. Done. Like it was so yesterday. After all the Christmas party-ing and crazy family-fying and being away from home for about 72 hours straight, I often feel that the week leading up to Christmas is some kind of holiday marathon. And, if you've run a marathon before (I've only done a half so far, but I can imagine a full), when you cross the finish line (a.k.a. going to bed on Christmas night), you're done. You've finished the race, completed the course and you're ready to grab your medal, go home, snuggle in bed and swear off running for a month in exchange for playing Math Workout on your couch or making a nice fancy scarf real crochet-like. You have had it. You've been wrung out. You want to hear no more of Art Van's once in a millenium sales (that they somehow have every single week), you do not want to spend Kohl's cash, you just want to go back to normal.
So that's what I do. My physical space represents the inside of my brain. If you have clutter, you have a chaotic mind. If you have simplicity and tranquility, you have a quiet(er) mind. I wakey wakey and begin the purge. Sometimes I have to sneak it - like if my hubby is off work and sleeping in the next room, yeah, let's say he kind of gets mad when he wakes up and finds that everything has disappeared. He likes the tree up, it reminds him of cozy-ness. Now I get that, but we've been cozy long enough and it's got to go. We have had an argument pretty much every December 26th we've been married because of my crazy tradition. At first he was so baffled and taken aback, he didn't really know what to say or do. Over the next ten-ish years, he would say, "You better not do that thing you do..." And alas, I had to do it anyway. I am usually not such a sassy wife, but in this I can't be convinced. I'm the one who stares at the living room all day (okay, not stare exactly but I know it's there) and he's at work.
This year was our 16th Christmas together (1 dating, 1 engaged, 14 married - yep, I was like you know, 10 or so when I got married, thus think of me as 26.) and a first has happened. A week or so ago, he said the same thing, "You better not do that thing you do..." and I said, "Honey, don't fight it. You have your traditions (like eating pierogies on Christmas Eve) and I have mine (like taking down the Christmas stuff before 9:00 in the morning on December 26th). I love you, that's just the way it is."
For the FIRST TIME, do you know what? He halfway accepted it! He said, "Well, don't take down the window lights, I like them."
HOORAY!!!! "Of course, dear! Now have some pie. Shall I make you a cup of coffee, sweetie pie darling honey bunny? And what about a back rub?" (Okay, I totes did not go as far as the back rub thing, but you get the gist.)
That, dear folks, is marriage at it's finest. And my home is all nice and tidy and I can think again and all is lovely.
I hope you and yours had a lovely Christmas (and enjoy your Boxing Day - what is that, anyway?).
Peace, love and clean it up!