Holiday Calm


I’m not worried. It feels weird.

wreathThis is the time of year when a lot of us are overwhelmed: by things to do, gifts to purchase and wrap, events to attend, loneliness, even. On top of everything else we normally pack into our lives, holiday hustle and bustle (and children’s labor-intensive projects that are all due at the same time!) can tip our lists over the edge of madness.

This is also the time of year, for me, when come down with a nasty case of bronchitis. I don’t remember if it happened last year, but every year before that going back to high school, right around December 10-15, it would hit me, knock me out for days.

It was a clear sign to me from my body: slow the eff down!

I am happy to say that I have come a long way in the last few years – it is one small victory in a sea of internal strife (a phrase that my sophomore history teacher used to use all the time) – toward not freaking out when I have a lot to do. As my close friends and family (and even several hundred Facebook friends) know, I’m certainly not even past my opponents’ 25 yard line on this one, but I think I’ve at least crossed the 50.

I sat down at my desk this morning and cleared a tiny space among the piles of receipts and papers so I could type. I listed out what I remember that I need to do, and the places I’m supposed to go. I’m not showered or dressed yet. My house, of course, is mostly a mess. I have a deadline coming up on Wednesday for which I still don’t have a hook (writers, you know what I’m talking about).

And I didn’t freak out or get panicky, like I used to.

I’ve had the normal amount of coffee. I haven’t taken any drugs. It’s only 8:00 AM, so I haven’t had any wine.

Could it be personal evolution? A fluke? Maybe it’s true holiday spirit, not just the hamster-on-a-wheel urge to shop and wrap and trim and decorate. Whatever it is, I feel okay. It’ll all get done, or it won’t, and either way as long as everyone is alive and healthy, that’s the point, right? “Shit’s gonna happen whether you worry about it or not,” my physical therapist used to say.

I guess I’ll take it. I just hope this means I don’t get sick this year.


  1. MomHOP says

    I “felt” so much lighter when I decided NOT to bake all those wonderful cookies because there was no one left to care. And besides, I would have eaten them all!

  2. says

    I’m glad you’ve found a patch of smooth waters in a sea of internal strife…

    (And I also wonder if your sophomore history teacher knows he made such an impact?)

    Cheers to your immune system and to the weirdness of no worry.
    Hope they both hold out for you long past December 15.
    julie gardner recently posted…The Write WordsMy Profile

  3. KTP says

    Julie, how high-school-teachery of you to think of that! I was going to write his name in this post but I realized I don’t remember it. My friend had a huge crush on him. (He was only 24, teaching at a Catholic girls’ high school. Can you imagine?) I’ll have to ask her.

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