Dear Beautiful You Two

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Yesterday was Christmas and I wanted to share some thoughts with you. This was my second holiday season in the states, but it's the first I've felt free to enjoy myself fully. The day wasn't full of meeting the expectations of others, it was full of doing things that made Kevin and me happy. I place high value in doing things that make me happy, even if others don't agree with it. I hope you do the same. Last year we were still absorbing our move to a new country, so the realities of everything hadn't really set in. I tried to get into the spirit; I wrote related posts and watched all the appropriate movies. All it did was remind me of how not normal I was. We ended up spending the day like any other day off work. I didn't realize it at the time but depression was sinking its claws deep in me. Depression is a funny thing; sometimes you aren't aware of it even being there until you look back. Did you know that depression has a long history in our family? It also has a long history of being ignored. That year is neither here nor there for me, it just was.

I don't know what the holidays are like for you anymore, but I do know what they were like for me. It was a happy time, where we were not aware of how tight money was, or that there were special rules to follow. It was just a time to be surrounded by the temporary love and happiness created by the occasion. It was Dad, taking the neighborhood kids to the store to buy presents for their parents. It was our sister organizing presents into individual person's piles every morning and Mom undoing it every night. It was finding that special thing Dad would hide in the tree for Mom. The one thing that wasn't a spatula, until one day, it was. Over time it changed, I don't know if it's due to me getting older. There's nothing I could have done to prevent it or stop it from happening, but it doesn't mean I like it. To prevent the loss of joy from happening would have meant people would have to face their problems, and we have a long history of ignoring our problems and burying secrets.

This year I decided I wanted it to be different, so I got excited. I took everything I knew about the holiday and threw it out the window. Kevin and I went to holiday markets, got a real tree, saw lights, drank a ton of interesting hot chocolates. My goal was to make everything special again, something to be treasured and loved. Full of my own expectations that the two of us could enjoy. I enjoyed every minute of the season, even the bitter cold and icy snow! I hope to one day be able to share this with you. It is so different now, and I'd love to share that and create something new. Hopefully you are open to that idea, but if you are happy already with the holidays that's okay too.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays,

Dear Beautiful You Two

Angela