Why I Wish You a Merry Christmas

“Happy Holidays” is becoming the only greeting you hear at Christmas. A lot of people whine or mutter about how political correctness is taking over everything including the holidays – yes, I am one of those people – but that’s not why that phrase upsets me.

It is so impersonal!

When I wish someone “Merry Christmas,” I am inviting them to enjoy a holiday I celebrate and love! I don’t get offended when someone tells me “Happy Hanukkah” because that is them extending the specialty of their holiday to me to enjoy!

Hearing “Happy Holidays” tells me that person does not truly care about what or how they are celebrating this year, and they certainly do not care about my celebrations. Happy Holidays is a phrase that can be used any time of year during any holiday season – late winter, spring, summer, etc. The phrase is so general it is almost irrelevant to say.

I actually had this discussion with a co-worker the other night who agreed my reasoning makes total sense. We then began wishing everyone a “Merry Christmas” with positive results. Many people returned the Merry Christmas while others thanked us and wished us Happy Kwanza or Hanukkah or a holiday special to them which I have no idea what it is or can even begin to try to spell! Nobody was offended.

To summarize: I tell people “Merry Christmas” because I want to include everybody in my favorite time of year. I don’t get offended or put off when somebody wishes me the best for their holiday because they are including me in their special time of year.

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We Need a Little Christmas

I was so pumped for Christmas this year. My mama got me Christmas socks to wear. I have had decorations planned since September. A workplace decorated for Christmas. I was ready. 

Cue the Grinches and Scrooges. 

For starters, Christmas cards. 

I have always loved getting and mailing out Christmas cards over the years. I don’t do the annual Christmas letter, but cards pretty to hang up and read. My family always hung them around our bay windows or the sliding doors. I’ve sent cards out the last couple years and always make a point to give them to my co-workers, even the ones who weren’t necessarily fond of me or who annoyed me to no end. This year is no different, or so I thought. 

I have never gotten such surprised and apparently grateful reactions to a simple little Christmas card. One person thanked me more than three times and I actually saw him reading it more than once throughout the day. Others actually have them propped up on their desks or in their drawers, pulling them out periodically during the shift. That is so incredibly sad to me. Then I realized that over the last couple of years, the number of Christmas cards hanging at my parents has dwindled to only close family members. I thought the only reason I got cards only from my grandparents and sometimes my aunt and uncle was because people forgot I had a different mailing address. 

What happened to getting into the Christmas spirit? Something so simple as Christmas cards! I saw on facebook today that someone posted a memory from last year, struggling to get Christmas cards out. The caption was this year they won’t even try. I had just finished writing theirs after an incredibly long and emotionally/mentally hard day at work. 

Work. I had two amazing partners at my old job who not only listened to Christmas music starting with the first snow fall, but one would even sing along! The second would start singing along after Thanksgiving. Sometimes. 12 hours of Christmas music was occasionally a bit much for him until I got CDs with Christmas songs neither of us had ever heard. Now at work, I was told to wait until after Thanksgiving. Fine. The Monday after Thanksgiving, I walk in to find the place decorated for Christmas, which was exciting even if I was not invited to help. I’m still new; I understand. I asked when the Christmas music was going to start and got a lot of whining in reply about how it’s not even December – wait til then. 

It is now the 6th of December, and there is no Christmas music playing. I was basically told today to quit asking. I’m even getting lied to in response at which point I did pull a bit of my EMT experience/RN’s kid voice that puts the most difficult patient, non-psych, in their place. The person cowered a bit and was trying to dig themselves out of their whole as  I walked away.

19 days til Christmas. My co-workers are very quickly draining my Christmas spirit with how much they whine about not only the music but also some of the decorations and their “obligations” not privilege. 

Let’s go back to Christmas cards. I spent probably half an hour trying to find Christmas cards that had anything to do with the Biblical origin of Christmas. I finally found some, but the verses inside are all about peace and justice which I did not realize until I opened them up at home. 

I don’t want to cancel Christmas because let’s face it, in this day and age, the chances of it coming back would be slim to none. However, I will no longer be discussing Christmas at my full-time job. Those Grinches and Scrooges don’t get to have the privilege of joining my celebration of Christmas when they cannot do something so simple as playing Christmas music. Half of them don’t even listen to the music or can tell me what is playing the other 11 months of the year.