About Christmas traditions

Todays assignment: Write naked

As I told you in an earlier post that’s not going to happen. It’s winter and cold and apart from that I would just feel silly. Instead I want to talk to you about Christmas. Again.

I’ve often wondered how others handle other peoples and especially their parents expectations for Christmas.

I myself have been really bad at handling Christmas for a long, long time.

During the first 44 years of my life I only spend 2 Christmases somewhere else than at my parents house. I think it was one of those things you always do the same way because you’ve always done it that way.

Christmas was the only time of year, when I could be sure to find all my siblings back home (well, maybe except my oldest brother, who wasn’t present most of the time), and of course it was nice; all of us together; my dad decorating the tree; my mom cooking the geese the way only she could; lots and lots of presents; and it’s my birthday on Christmas day. But still.

Somehow I never made the jump to having my own Christmas, even after having children, and until my girls were 17 and 19, I think, we bundled up every year around the 22nd of December and drove the long way home to my parents.

In earlier posts I told you about the Christmas calendars on Danish television, and every year it was the same drama: We missed the last one or two chapters. Imagine watching a really good movie where the last 5 or 10 minutes are missing. Every single year!

Apart from that we also missed out on building our own Christmas tradition, or at least our traditions were not about Christmas evening or Christmas day, but about the 24 days building up to it.

My youngest daughter and I talked about it the other day, and I’d actually forgotten about it, but every year we got ourselves a Christmas tree around the first of December, so the girls could decorate it and dance around it as much as they wanted, because that was a big no-no at my parents: a Christmas tree was something that had to be well decorated and beautiful and was something to look at and not something one would touch.

Every year I would rent a car, because we had no reason to have a car all the time, and then we would drive the long way to Germany. Many of those years we had quite a lot of snow, so the drive was difficult and took many, many hours, but I remember those trips as something fun. We played games, like: That jerk is driving way to fast, will we see him again in a ditch somewhere soon?, or we sang or told stories.

And then somehow life happened and there were two years when I didn’t go home for Christmas, and then I moved to the Netherlands and my children had become grown-ups and wanted to start their own Christmas traditions. And that was it. After my 44th birthday I never came home for Christmas again.

I never really managed to get my own Christmas traditions though. I’ve moved around too much, and marrying a Muslim didn’t really help, but I guess it’s not too late.

This year I’m going to have Christmas with my first husband and his second wife and her daughter and the daughters fiance and my two girls and my son in law. We’ve rented a summer house for a whole week and I am really looking forward to it.

And next year my siblings and I are going to rent another summer house for Christmas together, so none of us has to travel excessively and we’re all on neutral ground. I think that could become a great Christmas tradition.

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