On Why Holidays Suck Big, Fat Monkey Butt

I do enjoy the holidays. I really do.
Rather, I think I like the idea of holidays.

Since the divorce, I have come to loathe them.
You would think with being the only child for 11 years, that I would love the holidays like no other. This would be the time of year, where the parents would try to win me over by stacking piles under the tree so high I couldn't look over them. And while I never really wanted for anything it wasn't like that.
I could easily be won over with a gawdy, plastic record player and a couple of cassette tapes.

What I have come to loathe is the gentle pulling, the thin layer of guilt, the question that hangs in the air when being told of a family get-together. The disappointment that each side feels & isn't afraid to express, when I (now We) can't make it. And really, the one who loses out? Most usually, my dad, stepmom and my brothers. Just by geography, usually.
We usually seem to make it to see my mom & Rav's family. But there never seems to be enough time in the day for the one I'd like to see above all others.

And that's where I'm at today. Sort of. First of all, it's Easter. Easter. I mean.....I think this day has more Religious significance than say, Christmas. But it's Easter. And I'm not all that practicing in my religion. I believe I'm great at practicing it in my immediate environment. But I do not go anywhere weekly to practice. So, it's just Easter. Big whoopideedoo.

About a month ago, I was talking to my stepmom, Eileen, about whatever topic we were throwing ourselves into in that particular phone conversation. And she informed me they were having an Easter "Open House". Whenever you come, you come. No pressure. However, they were planning an Easter Egg hunt for the kids and we're going to exchange our Christmas presents. Yes, I said Christmas presents. See how religious we are?? We celebrate the two holiest of holy days in one. You've heard me go on & on in here about not seeing my dad yet for Christmas.
Everyone knows this.
My mom knows this.
And yet...

She's calling me every G**-D*** day asking me: Are we gonna see you for Easter? Even if it's before or after your dad's? Are we gonna at least see you?
(You know what? It's Easter. Get over it. I've seen you at least once a week for the past 4 years. I haven't seen my Dad since very early December for about 10 minutes. You can spare me for a day.)
I think what bothers me about her constant begging is she has seen my kids grow up. Jeez, she's seen me grow up - even if she doesn't remember it. My dad has missed a lot. I think that feeling is even more raw for him now knowing just how much he missed & he knows it's happening again with his grandkids.

I know, I know. I need to shut my mouth & stop complaining. It must be soooo hard to be soooo loved.
But I just need to get it out. Quite frankly, I need to tell them all how I feel. I've been carrying this around silently (except for complaining to Rav or possibly his family or my BFF) for years.

It just strikes me as funny that I'm an adult. With my own family. My own kids. And I feel like I am still stuck in 1984 - I still have this immense guilt when it comes to my parents - this weighty responsibility. This fear of making them sad and making them feel disappointed. I have this keen awareness of time. Something most people think about in terms of it's time to go to work, it's time to eat, it's time to go to bed.
For me it's, They're losing time, They're losing out, They haven't had much time with me/us, there isn't much time left.

Like I said, I know I need to stop whining. I just really needed to purge this.
The anxiety of tomorrow is already starting.
But I really can't wait to see my Dad, Eileen, and my brothers.
I know it's going to be a good day.

6 ripples in the pond:

jen said...

I LOVE that picture.

Thankfully, we live a distance from everyone so we don't have to deal w/ too much of this, but oh, yes...i know.

Anonymous said...

I love that picture too and your Dad is cute. How old is he? I think you mentioned a stepmom though, didn't you? You can't please everyone, or anyone sometimes. Please yourself. You want to see your Dad, go see him. Hope you have a wonderful time.

Anonymous said...


yeah, so i shouldn't be attempting to type a comment when i'm so tired that i just typed the word verification letters to start! oops.

anyhow, being a divorced mom of a small one, i find it very interesting how you described your feelings/perceptions about time. i actually feel that way, too, as an adult in this situation.

rut row, little one crying... hope you have a good day tomorrow!

jen r.

Tabba said...

Jen - That picture is one of my fav's...I think I've used it 3 times on here...it's sad but it's the most recent picture of the 2 of them together..and it's from October.

Deb - he is a cutie, huh? I can't wait to share with him the stir he is causing on here ;)

Jen - hope you are getting some rest. Enjoy the day with your little girl :)

Joker The Lurcher said...

one positive thing i took from my childhood is that i feel i don't owe them anything. so if i see them its because i want to. if anyone dared to try to guilt trip me you wouldn't see me for dust!

it sounds as though your mum still hasn't grown up. she still expects you to be the parent somehow. maybe its time for her to put you first for a change?

Pippajo said...

Oh it's so sad how much I can relate to this and my parents aren't even divorced!

Easter has always been one of those big, important, high-guilt, high-pressure holidays for us too.

Every year, EVERY YEAR we have been stuck going on some ridiculous picnic with my parents and EGOD on Easter Sunday even though for the past 7 years we have wanted to do ANYTHING but that!

We finally changed things this year. I made a ham and we invited my sister and brother-in-law over. That was it. We broke free.

And of course there has been some drama, but until I hear directly from my mother that she is upset with me I am going about my business as if she's not.

I'll probably be posting more about this on my page, but I just had to say I can relate.

Oh, and Easter is NOTHING compared to Mother's Day and Father's Day!