Christmas is Canceled

2020 has been a dumpster fire pure and simple. Between being stuck at home for nearly a year, watching our favorite restaurants close, and dealing with the kids' virtual schooling, this year has sucked. However, compared to most, our year has been decent. Neither Christine nor I lost hours at work, we've been fortunate enough not to contract COVID-19, and the kids are doing amazingly in school. We even found time to spend together as a couple and as a family despite the many restrictions put in place.

For obvious reasons, we didn't travel back to NY this year. It's the first time since moving to Delaware over 9 years ago that we didn't make the drive at least once. While I was sad not to be able to go, we did have family visit here and there over the summer. We expected there to be a good chance of going up to NY for Thanksgiving or, if not that, at least having people visit over Christmas. First we had to cancel our NY trip. Then this week we made the very tough decision of asking people, who had already made travel and lodging reservations, not to come.

It was the responsible decision to make. It was the smart decision to make. It's a decision that has killed my Christmas spirit almost entirely. To complain about this is so selfish and dripping with privilege, but the feelings I have remain. I literally just posted about our Christmas traditions, and while we'll still do some of them, part of me doesn't see the point. Why bake the cookies when we can't really share them? Why plan the big meals when only three of us will realistically be eating them? Why bother with the gifts if we're just shipping them?

It's silly to complain, but this is not Christmas. Sure, I'll be happy ordering Chinese food on Christmas Eve and watching movies. It'll be fun to get up Christmas morning and watch the kids open their many, many gifts (if you are reading this and happened to buy them something this year, please pump the breaks next year because they have enough stuff). I'll bake the cookies because I like to bake them. There will be some more involved meals because we have to eat something.

Christmas will happen but it's not the Christmas I was looking forward to, or the one I think I deserved after this crappy year. I wanted a few days with family that I don't get to see often enough, but 2020 had to take that too. Maybe we should have not gone out to eat or not gone over to friends' houses or not done anything like many others choose not to. If I could go back and not do those things to get Christmas, I would in a heart beat. Christmas isn't canceled, but since it's 2020, it may as well be.

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