The season of good cheer?

Merry Christmas! Happy solstice! Happy holidays! Happy New Year!

This, so they say, is the season of good cheer. We are all encouraged and perhaps even expected to be merry and light, tickled red and green with the spirit of Christmas.

And yet, I know that for so many of us the holidays feel nothing like this. They remind us of loved ones no longer with us, or the dysfunction and bad blood festering with those still here. We get disgusted by the rampant consumerism and waste so celebrated this time of year. We look out at the cold, grey, darkness outside our windows and just can’t seem to find that spirit within us. Or we get overwhelmed by the need to find just the right gift for everyone and to feign gratitude and excitement every time we get yet another pair of socks we don’t need or want.

For many, this is not always the season of good cheer. It can feel more like something just to survive and get through without totally losing our minds.

For those of you out there, like me, who feel something like this over the holidays, I just want to say you’re not alone. I do wish you a happy holidays. But maybe more than that, I wish that you have permission to fully feel whatever you actually feel and be wherever you actually are.

You don’t need to be merry and light. You don’t need to be tickled red and green with the spirit of Christmas. You don’t need to be anything.

You can just be you.

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