A motion to start the holiday season early
Yes, the onslaught of Christmas commercials the day after Halloween is insane. But maybe we deserve a little holiday cheer after the year we've all had, right?
I myself am a huge believer in not celebrating the Christmas season until after Thanksgiving. This means no Christmas movies, no Christmas music and no decorations until after I have spent a day eating my weight in turkey, potatoes and stuffing. I keep this principle because I think it makes the holiday season feel more magical; if it lasted too long, it would feel less special.
However, 2020 has forced me to change my view on this matter. Between a global pandemic, an election, online school and the world practically falling apart, my principle seems outdated. This year has taken a major toll on so many people and has robbed us of so much joy. Therefore, it is up to us to steal some of that joy back, and few things bring as much joy as the holiday season. As of Nov. 1, I have decided to agree that it is in fact acceptable to commence the holiday season.
You can now find me listening to Christmas music, watching cheesy Hallmark movies and hanging up lights in my room. Does it feel a little weird at this point of the year? Sure. But do you know what else feels weird? Not remembering a time when things were not so “unprecedented.”
It is decided that I will handle every last problem 2020 throws at us with hot chocolate, an adorable Christmas pajama set and the soothing effects of a balsam and cedar scented candle. I highly recommend that you do too — we have earned it.
I trust that there are skeptics, as I was one myself for a long time. Afterall, going from pumpkins, skeletons and candy to Christmas so fast feels a bit unnatural for us to “wait until after Thanksgiving” folks. For those of you less willing to take part in festivities so soon, I have some suggestions for you.
Why not take small steps? Wade your way into the holiday season by watching movies that are less obviously Christmas ones — think of “Die Hard,” “Love Actually” or “When Harry Met Sally.” Any of those movies can be justified watching year round. Rather than buy an overtly Christmas scented candle, go for something a little more subtle, like a vanilla/cookie scent. If you are not quite ready for Christmas music, I recommend listening to more modern renditions of the classics, since they feel a little less sacred. Finally, who said it is a crime to have twinkly lights up in your room year round? All these steps can help you seem a little less like a grinch.
For those of you who altogether dislike the holiday season, why not give it a shot this year? There is nothing left to lose. Not to mention, there are Christmas songs designed for people who are sad during the holidays, like Joni Mitchell’s “River” or Coldplay’s “Christmas Lights.” Whatever your aesthetic, there is a holiday one for you as well.
Starting Christmas early is not only emotionally beneficial, it’s also practical. The sooner you get your shopping done this year, the better. Many shipping companies are expecting to be even more overwhelmed than usual in the coming months due to a combination of the holiday season and the pandemic. So, why not get a head start and use the excitement of getting gifts for your loved ones as a distraction from all the bad going on in the world. Many stores already have their Christmas inventory in, so you are good to go.
Making the choice to start celebrating the holidays now is not going to diminish the magic. It is a way of creating our own joy in a year that has left us very little to be joyful about. Given the way this year has gone, who knows what is coming in the next two months. Why not find a way to feel a little bit better about whatever may come next. It’s time to at least add a bit of the holiday spirit to your day to day life for your own sanity.