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The Anxiety of Christmas

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Out of fear and embarrassment, I put off sharing how I truly feel at this time of the year. I worry that people will feel sorry for me and pity me (which is not what I want, nor need). I feel embarrassed that as the year comes to an end I still haven’t achieved all that I set out to do and that year after year I’m still stuck. And I worry people will judge my family.

As Christmas approaches the usual anxiety kicks in and the inner turmoil begins. Year round I’m not really a shopping person and I avoid buying things unless I really have to. Our

SelfishMother.com
2
income generally goes on bills, food, petrol and the occasional coffee shop trip and little family days out that often don’t cost a lot.

November comes around and suddenly Christmas shopping is the topic of conversation; with questions such as what am I getting the girls for Christmas? I have a four month old and two year old and maybe because of our financial position I don’t really think too in-depth about their presents, or plan out time to buy things for them.

As I write this I find myself welling up with tears because perhaps I’m not

SelfishMother.com
3
good enough that I can’t buy them more. I know my girls are happy and I generally feel my daughters are too young to understand Christmas Day and the fact Santa is meant to bring lots of presents. I know this isn’t the case for some people who have older kids that are fully aware of Christmas.  I can’t imagine how they  feel as the pressure is greater.

We are told presents don’t matter and Christmas is all about family yet we frantically write lists and get stressed. We feel guilty if someone buys for us but we haven’t bought for them…

SelfishMother.com
4
so rush out last minute to buy a Boots box set that the person is likely to store away in a cupboard and re-gift next year.

We find out what other kids are getting so we can make sure our kids our up to date with the latest stuff. We wrap a billion presents, presenting them nicely under the tree for the token Facebook photo and eagerly anticipate their little smiles as they wake in the early hours wondering if Santa has been. And then we wait, we wait to see if they’re happy with their toys.

Not everyone can relate to this as many are in a

SelfishMother.com
5
wonderful financial position from working extremely hard and sacrificing lots for their children. I decided to be a stay at home mum but I like to think I still work hard and the rewards are different.

The reason I’m sharing this is the same reason I share most of my blogs – because someone out there will be in the same situation, and will be feeling alone. I don’t believe I’m the only one in this situation or the only one with anxiety when someone asks me about how my Christmas shopping is going.

Some people have worked hard so their kids

SelfishMother.com
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can have a fantastic Christmas and this quality is admirable. Others struggle to make ends meet and feel like a failure. Over the years I’ve learnt that family is the most important thing. I find more happiness knowing I can spend quality time with my loved ones. My husband is fortunate to have annual leave so I embrace the time we have together. I’m sharing this blog to let others know you are not a failure and that happiness really does come from within.

I’m also sure many people would trade their gifts if it meant having a loved one around at

SelfishMother.com
7
Christmas (perhaps someone who has died or is no longer around). The comparison trap is horrible and I know it’s heightened at Christmas. We have the desire to create the best Christmas possible.

So we can be more present and switch off our phones and listen to one another . We can have a joyful Christmas spending time together. We can exchange a few gifts or two without going overboard. We can visit Santa, watch the Christmas lights being switched on, drink hot chocolate and watch Elf for the hundredth time.

I will leave you with this that my

SelfishMother.com
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husband always says –  “Can you remember the gifts you got for Christmas last year?” My answer is always no.

I do remember the year that has just passed, the new addition in July, the fact my daughter has a baby sister. And that is the most important thing. Have a great Christmas. Know that your worth is not measured by how many gifts you buy.

SelfishMother.com
Fiona Ng

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- 19 Nov 17

Out of fear and embarrassment, I put off sharing how I truly feel at this time of the year. I worry that people will feel sorry for me and pity me (which is not what I want, nor need). I feel embarrassed that as the year comes to an end I still haven’t achieved all that I set out to do and that year after year I’m still stuck. And I worry people will judge my family.

As Christmas approaches the usual anxiety kicks in and the inner turmoil begins. Year round I’m not really a shopping person and I avoid buying things unless I really have to. Our income generally goes on bills, food, petrol and the occasional coffee shop trip and little family days out that often don’t cost a lot.

November comes around and suddenly Christmas shopping is the topic of conversation; with questions such as what am I getting the girls for Christmas? I have a four month old and two year old and maybe because of our financial position I don’t really think too in-depth about their presents, or plan out time to buy things for them.

As I write this I find myself welling up with tears because perhaps I’m not good enough that I can’t buy them more. I know my girls are happy and I generally feel my daughters are too young to understand Christmas Day and the fact Santa is meant to bring lots of presents. I know this isn’t the case for some people who have older kids that are fully aware of Christmas.  I can’t imagine how they  feel as the pressure is greater.

We are told presents don’t matter and Christmas is all about family yet we frantically write lists and get stressed. We feel guilty if someone buys for us but we haven’t bought for them… so rush out last minute to buy a Boots box set that the person is likely to store away in a cupboard and re-gift next year.

We find out what other kids are getting so we can make sure our kids our up to date with the latest stuff. We wrap a billion presents, presenting them nicely under the tree for the token Facebook photo and eagerly anticipate their little smiles as they wake in the early hours wondering if Santa has been. And then we wait, we wait to see if they’re happy with their toys.

Not everyone can relate to this as many are in a wonderful financial position from working extremely hard and sacrificing lots for their children. I decided to be a stay at home mum but I like to think I still work hard and the rewards are different.

The reason I’m sharing this is the same reason I share most of my blogs – because someone out there will be in the same situation, and will be feeling alone. I don’t believe I’m the only one in this situation or the only one with anxiety when someone asks me about how my Christmas shopping is going.

Some people have worked hard so their kids can have a fantastic Christmas and this quality is admirable. Others struggle to make ends meet and feel like a failure. Over the years I’ve learnt that family is the most important thing. I find more happiness knowing I can spend quality time with my loved ones. My husband is fortunate to have annual leave so I embrace the time we have together. I’m sharing this blog to let others know you are not a failure and that happiness really does come from within.

I’m also sure many people would trade their gifts if it meant having a loved one around at Christmas (perhaps someone who has died or is no longer around). The comparison trap is horrible and I know it’s heightened at Christmas. We have the desire to create the best Christmas possible.

So we can be more present and switch off our phones and listen to one another . We can have a joyful Christmas spending time together. We can exchange a few gifts or two without going overboard. We can visit Santa, watch the Christmas lights being switched on, drink hot chocolate and watch Elf for the hundredth time.

I will leave you with this that my husband always says –  “Can you remember the gifts you got for Christmas last year?” My answer is always no.

I do remember the year that has just passed, the new addition in July, the fact my daughter has a baby sister. And that is the most important thing. Have a great Christmas. Know that your worth is not measured by how many gifts you buy.

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Fiona Ng

Newcastle upon Tyne Girl Mama Founder of Happy Me Tea - Healthy Loose leaf teas created for pregnancy, motherhood & wellness Conscious Parenting xoxo

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