Merry (bleep) Christmas

December 27, 2009 at 1:43 pm (The Easy Chair)

As Christmases go, this has been the darkest in a long time. A loved one has been going through some trials and tribulations, and it’s affecting the whole family. Not because of what they did, but because they feel so bad about doing it. (Sorry for the vagueness; it’s an ongoing legal thing. Healthwise everyone is fine.) Someone I love dearly is hurting, and there’s a lot of sympathy pain and commiseration coming from my camp. Things are bleak right now, but they will get better.

Money is another issue. We make just enough to cover the bills, and when surprise expenses pop up the first thing to sacrifice are non-necessities. However, you can’t just tell the kids, “Sorry, we can’t afford Christmas this year.” So we improvise, sacrificing cool-factor for bang-for-the buck. My niece, the twelve-year-old who has been singing Christmas carols since October, got a waffle iron from me. I was expecting sarcasm at the least from her mom and dad, but her? She loved it, and can’t wait to make me waffles. I bought a giant bag of Krusteaz buttermilk pancake mix, a jug of fake syrup, and will be testing her cooking skills in the wee hours. She tends to keep swing shift hours like the rest of the family when school is not in session.

She’s funny. At twelve, she’s still a kid at heart, but the young woman/’I wanna be an adult’ side is surfacing. For example, she wanted to know why everyone in the house but her could use the “s-word” and the “effer-word”.

It was a good question.

We’ve tended to ignore her brother’s occasional use of profanity, figuring we’ll address the situation if it becomes an issue. It’s worked. He rarely swears, and when he does he swears at things, not people. He gets the spirit of swearing.

So, as we were pulling the turkey out of the oven on Christmas day, I brought the subject up to mom and dad, while their daughter was standing there. While it was agreed that we would ignore her swearing if she kept it at home, her mom still reserved the right to remind her to be ladylike. I explained that with rights come responsibilities, so no cussing out her teachers.

While she didn’t get much monetarily, me sticking up for her seemed to go over well. She hasn’t sworn once that I’ve heard, and she knows someone has her back. Knowing you have family support is important.

As I looked at my ragtag family opening their meager presents, I realized I have many things to be thankful for. Things may be dark now, but the sun will come out eventually, and we will persevere and succeed. To fail is not an option.

I just wish happy days would get back to me soon. I don’t deal well with this type of darkness.

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