Who Owns Christmas Morning?
Today is my 25th wedding anniversary. Lucky me. The picture below is Stacey and me on our honeymoon in Colorado. We came back 'home' from that honeymoon on December 24th and did not go to our home. We went straight to my mother-in-law's house where we spent the night and stayed there all day on Christmas. Then after that, with what little time was left, we hurried to my parent's house and spent the rest of the evening there. Not even a chance to go sit in my own house with my new wife and revel in the moment of us finally reaching the life we wanted: to be together in our OWN home. But that's not really allowed since tons of mothers and mother-in-laws think they own Christmas morning. And they do. To a certain point. Like when I was 2. Or 9. Or 15. And even 18. But married? And they now own my spouse also? Sorry parents, but when your child has left your nest and joined their life partner in marriage, you are no longer entitled. Your days of raising that child are over. It's now their turn to create whatever rituals and traditions they may see fit for their newly formed family. And if you respect that fact they just may include you in their festivities.
BESIDES, Christmas morning is usually around 6am-noon. Six short hours. Or six really long hours depending on how you look at it. If you have to have YOUR Christmas morning so bad, then schedule it for another day. Maybe 2 days after Christmas. Or six days before Christmas. You will still breathe the same air. Electricity will still power your house. You could even still call it Christmas morning and we could all pretend that it really is. In reality this Cirque du Soleil mentality is complete madness. Here's a helpful hint that could solve this problem: allow your grown children to do whatever they want on Christmas morning while you and your spouse go do something different and crazy on that day. You've earned it. You've done the deed of raising a family. You've been married 25 years or so. It's time to leave that paradigm and do something with your beloved. Take a trip. Walk around your neighborhood during the Christmas morning hours and enjoy the quiet peace. It's the quietest day of the year (except for those people who are anxiously blasting off in their cars going from one relative's house to another). I go running. Our daughter is grown and out of our house. She can do whatever she wants on Christmas. She chooses to hang out with us. We give her a few gifts, make a fire, talk, and it's all good. Nobody is getting upset because she wasn't on our doorstep at 6:30am sharp ready to march the drill of Christmas morning at OUR house.
But back before she was born we spent those young years replicating the same Christmas morning every year at somebody else's house with absolutely no tradition of our own. Until I couldn't take it anymore. So when Andie was 9 we told everybody BYE! And away we went to a cabin in the mountains of Arkansas and never looked back. This should've of happened the first Christmas Stacey and I were married 25 years ago. If I knew then what I know now. So, happy anniversary to me and my wife. There's nothing like it. Not parents, not children, not other relatives, not music. Nothing. Just Stacey.