An older woman posing like the Atlas sculpture but instead of a globe shes holding a Christmas ball.

How I Am Spending Christmas This Year

Christmas has been one of my favorite holidays, as it is one holiday that brings joy to everyone. It is a holiday that also brings everyone closer together. All year-round, we are all so busy with work and everything else that comes with it. I feel that sometimes we forget about the meaning of spending time together with our loved ones. It can get hard to see everyone often.

Every year, the way we would plan with my family, is to spend Christmas eve, Christmas day, and even the day after Christmas visiting aunts, uncles, cousins, my parents, and my husband’s parents. We would have to fit them all in and make sure not to miss anyone, because some would get upset, especially the parents. It would get exhausting, at times for me. I remember always not feeling well, during this time. I would feel exhausted and full of anxiety. I remember missing work after these times, as it would take me longer to recuperate and get back to feeling myself. I didn’t understand why then, as I do now since diagnosis.

Since diagnosis, my holidays look a little different for me and my family

We have taken a step back. Last year was very simple. I wasn’t able to do much, as I was still bedridden, most of the time. I didn’t feel comfortable going out with Covid around and being immunocompromised. We stayed home me, hubby, and the kids. Christmas eve, I had cooked a small dinner to enjoy with the family.

I remember that alone was too much for me

I ended in bed early. I remember being so disappointed, as hubby and the kids joined the rest of the family on Zoom, playing games, while I wasn’t able to from being in extreme pain and feeling like I got hit by a truck. A lot of my family members didn’t understand why I wasn’t a part of that. Christmas day hubby picked up breakfast and we opened the gifts with the kids. I had to stay behind, while the hubby took the kids visiting to see the grandparents. This time also, I had to explain again why I wasn’t able to make it. I feel always needing to explain, often.

This year, things have changed even more

We don’t speak to some of our close family. A lot has to do with them not understanding my illness. During the year, I had to miss some events, which lead some to be angry towards me. But it will make it easier on our decisions, on how to spend the holidays, this year. I will be spending the holidays, at home with my husband and kids.

My plan will be to listen this time to my body. I will either get pre-made food that is easy to put together or order something fancy for Christmas eve, that is ready. This way I will have more time to enjoy with my husband and kids. This way I can make sure I don’t overdo it and aggravate my pains. Cooking can easily put me into a bad flare. It consists of standing for long periods of time, using my arms and shoulders, that affect my feet and legs to be in excruciating pain and feel weak, after. Christmas day, will be waking up and opening gifts with the kids, as it is their favorite part of Christmas. Followed by breakfast at home and finishing off with Christmas movies.

I love this time of year, as it brings the family closer together. I might not be able to do Christmas the way I used to, running around from house to house, decorating and cooking for hours, but I can still make it special in other ways.

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