When the holiday season approaches, I always feel a bit wary. Could it be the blatant commercialism, the same slick Christmas soundtrack played at almost every store you go to ad nauseam, or the pushy crowds of rabid shoppers? All of these things remind me to keep this annual experience in proper perspective. After all, I don’t only give thanks on Thanksgiving, and I have become good at avoiding the materialism that often distracts many of us from what Christmas is really about. It has taken years of practice for me to resist making great holiday expectations.
Don’t get me wrong; I am a big fan of childlike awe and pleasure in the season. Watching the Thanksgiving Day Parade on television and seeing a Christmas tree light up for the first time are just two simple things I will never get bored of, so I am not completely apathetic. It’s just those commercials for Black Friday, and listening to people who dread seeing certain family members once a year behind their backs that grates on my nerves. These two occurrences are so commonplace that they have become universally accepted to many. I am just one of those people who want to avoid these unnecessary and negative aspects that can ruin the goodness and purity of the holidays, if I can. I think I do this to avoid being disenchanted and cynical. I want to enjoy the season for the right reasons.
I stay true to the holiday spirit by avoiding commercials as much as possible, and shopping at stores when the crowds are not there. I have my own Christmas playlist on my iPod, and I listen to the songs I like when I want to. I also remember to breathe when in an uncomfortable holiday-related situation. The only way I can avoid it all is to go to Sri Lanka now until after the New Year. I did not pick this location at random; I actually did my research on great escapes from the commercialism and stress of the season.