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Tabytha Towe's Vancouver Diary

Is This the Season to be Jolly?
Tabytha Towe

Oh joy! Winter is upon us
Really, I am a lot more hopeful than I sound, and I haven’t found it in me to tell my loved ones that Christmas is cancelled for me this year anyhow. But now that my shopping is done, the pretty lights are up and the divine feast is already organised, I have become less aggravated by the whole plasticity appeal of this seasonal ordeal.

I try to think of it as more than what it really is, for it means more to someone to believe in the spirit of it than what it actually is intended for. Sure it’s about Jesus being born or re-born again, something special of the sort, Hallelullijah, and it’s about a time for gathering with our loved ones and remembering how lucky we are. Well, isn’t that what it was supposed to be about?

Now, it’s all about who gets what and how much and if you can pay off your credit card by next year, yada, yada. Isn’t commercialism grand? I remember as a child presents were a major part of it, but the Christmas spirit was more about the wonder of it; the decorations, the carols, chocolates, my family laughing with one another. As we get older we lean towards the relief of it finally being over, whereas a child waits 365 days for this day and want it to last forever.

It’s not as much a warm, lovely jingly time anymore, in adulthood the responsibility has turned it into a consumers nightmare. Sadly, it has rather become an obsessive, chaotic factor that haunts you two months prior to the actual present exchanging day, in hopes that for those three precious seconds the gift Receiver opens it from you, the Giver, loves it for more than just three seconds and how it pleases you so to have chosen well for them. But what if they don’t love what‘s been given, what if you don’t like what you have received? The horror! All That effort to be turned down in the end. I admit I do that occasionally, but I keep repeating that there are certain things I need, and certain things that I simply do not. But I still appreciate the thought, it does count. It’s quite hard pleasing everyone, especially equally and within a budget, which is funny how we tend to go way over every time we walk passed a store. What a dumb material world. Can we not all be such spoiled brats on this particular occasion. After all, don‘t we deserve to be? For Christ sakes! How typical the narrow minded society we are in modern days. I can freely say the Lords name in vain, oblivious to the context, but if I were to go to a hardware store and ask a clerk where their Christmas trees were located, but I’d be politically corrected into calling it a "Holiday tree". Apparently a few non Christians get offended by the gesture of Christ in Christmas now…

Lately I have had much troubled sleep, due to many stresses, mostly too personal to share and of course, financial restraints. (This time of year is partially responsible for that).

I stay awake all night thinking of what things could be, that damned ‘what if? As if I don’t appreciate what I have, which is certainty plenty enough. We always think of what we miss rather then what bliss we have. This makes me incredulously selfish, something I loathe in myself. I think then of all the things that a huge and vast majority of the world DO NOT have, what I don’t do to help any one of them, and how dare I feel like crying. Why do I even feel shitty, because of how crap the world is, because I don’t do with my life what I had expected by now, because sometimes my boyfriend just doesn’t understand; because I feel like I’m struggling more than I am even surviving, never mind living? I can answer a million questions I ask, and it makes me more anxious, and those close to me get confused, much like I am. I get these frustrating dark moods where I am completely unmotivated and turn numb and careless. I don’t realise how it bothers others, and it’s not that I want attention or pity or anything, I just want to be left alone to be melodramatic I guess.

I laugh at myself "ha, lonesome fool, now look at what you’ve accomplished, you’re being utterly ridiculous, you pathetic, fucking coward!" Suddenly my mood swings into gear and over the next couple days guilt takes hold of me and I move on and miraculously communicate my feelings or find another job or something. I reckon that this new year I interpret fear and relief for new beginnings that shall start soon. I obliged to look back at 2005 and see where it has got me to today, for tomorrow. I find it necessary to say now that this was not my year, for it was meant to be better. It was my gateway period, I had to wait things out and test my strength to prepare for bigger things yet to come, that I sense that 2006 will bring, what I will bring to the table this year round; bust out the silver spoons!

You know what we should do for those less fortunate than us, I mean, they deserve something too. If we don’t have an extra penny to spare, though admittedly we always do, but always deny the beggar, understandably no doubt, we can at least give something we can without shame. You know, if you have a roof over your head, a meal everyday and don’t suffer intolerable illness, we already have more than 70% of the rest of the world we live in, but do not share. So we can give a couple of homeless people socks or gloves this Christmas, make their cold and miserable winter easier, or even a friggin’ candy cane, simple man. We can send some clothes to the shelters that we neglect to wear anymore, send a few bucks overseas to support medical alert. My goal for 2006 is not to just support myself without strain, but to support as many causes as much as I can. It may not be a lot, but little still makes a difference. I want to sponsor a child in Ethiopia, adopt an abandoned animal from the pound. It’ll cost me minimal energy in working a few hours more but be spent that much more significantly. I say that will happen, I mean it to, but only action will do it. This is my resolution, my redemption, my mission. I look forward to it. As the famous author Aldous Huxley has said, "…liberties are not given, they are taken." Repeat this quote often and the truth will hit you hard.

© Tabytha Towe Jan 2006

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