Is it weird that I am considering becoming a Jehovah’s Witness simply so I can stop celebrating holidays? I mean, that sort of falls somewhere on the spectrum of “a normal thought”…right? I don’t want to be a door-to-door, take-this-pamphlet-or-you’re-going-to-hell type of Jehovah’s Witness or anything, but I’m seriously weighing the pros and cons of converting to a holiday-free lifestyle. I think I could really groove to it. I am so sick of celebrating holidays and birthdays. The other day we were 1/2 hour late for school because my 5-year-old wanted to wear a green shirt in honor of St. Patrick’s Day…but the only green shirt that was clean was a green pajama shirt. She wasn’t having it. I finally managed to talk her into wearing a teal shirt by convincing her that she needed to have her eyes checked if she thought the shirt was blue not green. (I don’t feel bad about that, by the way. I bought myself a chai tea latte as a reward for such an ingenious off-the-cuff parenting maneuver.) Last month was Valentine’s Day (cards and candy and red shirts), next month is Easter (candy and, for some reason, small gifts). It’s a never-ending constant hoopla around here, and as if the major holidays aren’t enough to deal with, Feb also kicks off the season of Butters’ birthdays. This is how our celebration calendar goes:
Sept: New school year (new clothes, yay!)
Oct: Halloween (5 elaborate costumes, yay!)
Nov: Thanksgiving (the day before black Friday and a barrage of toy commercials yay!)
Dec: Christmas (5 gazillion presents to buy, yay!)
Jan: New Year’s (nothing to buy? Double yay!)
Feb: Valentine’s Day and a bday (should have shopped in Jan. Double not yay!)
March: So many bday’s. So many. And St. Patty’s Day. Green shirts. (unenthusiastic yay)
April: Easter (Easter baskets. I love jelly beans, so, yay!)
May: Nothing. I love May.
June: Birthday (ugh)
July: Another birthday (blech)
August: Two more birthdays (help!)
So basically we are broke and dog-tired September through August each and every year. By the time the last birthday comes along I’m wrapping presents in old newspaper and using actual match sticks as candles in the ice cream cake. It’s all so mentally exhausting. And mental. And exhausting. Although, don’t get me wrong, some of the birthdays ARE easy and somewhat enjoyable to shop for, (even considering the fact that I would rather cover myself in honey and lay on top of an ant hill than shop.) For some of the kids, no matter what I get them I know they will be psyched.(“Playdough?! Omigod! This is the best day of my life!”)
But God help me as I try to shop for the ornery child who hates everything. Except, I thought, Playdough. (“Playdough?! WHY would I want Playdough? I hate Playdough. Playdough is stupid. I’m returning it.”) And on the inside I’m like, “I don’t really give a rat’s ass if you want Playdough or not. I went to 55 different stores to try to find something that I thought you might not hate, but there was nothing. Nothing. So I bought you a freaking four-pack of Playdough and wrapped it in Christmas wrapping paper that I had to turn inside out so that the ‘Ho Ho Ho’ didn’t show because you all decided to use the roll of birthday wrapping paper as a giant sword after the last birthday and while shopping for the perfect gift, that I knew you were going to decide to hate, I forgot to buy more.” But what I really say is, “That’s okay buddy. You can return it and get what you want.” (As I make a quick mental note to teach him the fine art of politely pretending you like a present until it is appropriate to admit that you actually hate it and would like to return it.)
I live in the land of constant celebration. I see no way out…except… to become a Jehovah’s Witness. So keep your eyes out my friends, and if you see me bopping through your neighborhood with a big smile on my face and a stack of pamphlets in my hands just smile and wave. Just smile and wave.
p.s. Check out the right-hand navigation bar (or if you are on your mobile device, scroll to the bottom) and take a peek at some products and services offered by some local peeps. Click on their links and delight in their offerings. Go on. Do it.