We know the holiday season can weigh a bit heavy when your mind is cloudy with worry. The images that bombard us at this time of year can focus on that idyllic picture of what it means to be a family, and sometimes our reality doesn’t fit in that frame. The honest truth is that NO family is perfect.
It’s almost epidemic, the idea that everyone around you is having the perfect holiday. Everyone gets along, finds each other interesting and endlessly amusing and no one is spreading themselves too thin to accommodate all sides of the family or the relatives who don’t speak to each at any other time of year. Guilt and resentment appear non-existent in this holly jolly season. In a time when everyone’s social media feeds are more active than they are all year, festooned with pictures of daily family fun, color-coordinated sweaters and perfect Christmas trees, it’s hard to remember that most of these moments are curated. No one has a life that actually LOOKS like their Instagram feed.
Perhaps we’re all trying to find some perfect moments. But the pursuit of perfection can be exhausting when you feel like your reality doesn’t match up to the World’s expectations. However, there IS a way to enjoy the holiday on your own terms. Take a moment and reflect and redefine the holiday Season for yourself: think about what makes this time special for YOU. Establish your own happy moments of quiet contemplation. Read a book completely uninterrupted, binge watch your favorite shows, snack on your favorite things, and remember that those that matter to you, those that love you, love you in all of your not-so-curated splendor. Silence the comparisons by making your holiday special for YOU; social media does not need to witness your moment-by-moment holiday agenda.
Remember, no one and nothing is perfect, and for every foiled photo-op, there’s a moment that’s perfectly perfect by pure accident. Remember these, file them away as your own personal highlight reels, and call on them the rest of the year when it feels that the “wrongs” outweigh the “rights.” You are not alone, open your heart to the possibilities that fall outside “perfection” and don’t be afraid of feeling a little vulnerable. We all do, from time to time. Lean on those you consider family, whether by blood or by choice and you will find the strength to forge your own version of a family Christmas; who’s perfect imperfection can be beautiful too.