Post Christmas Ladder

When life gets you down just make sure you have a ladder to climb back up again.

Listen to me, I’m being sillyphosical again. I’m trying this positive attitude business that everyone keeps going on about. You know the thing, before you get out of bed, tell the World how grateful you are. Sod that, when I wake up first thing in the morning, I want a wee.

Then of course there is the write three pages, uninterrupted time to yourself. Where? Go on tell me, where do I get thirty minutes first thing in the morning? Coffees, Marks lunch, feed the dogs, and the dragon’s. Then walk the dogs, sort out washing. Morning over.

Meditate, I can do that. That’s called, Mark stuck in the toilet for 45 minutes and I have no choice, try and get on with the day, or go back to sleep. Because Sod’s law dictates that if you are awake and someone else is in the loo, you will need to go. So, I use the time to meditate. What, guided meditation or music? Neither. The gentle rhythm of my own breathing is the only thing I need. Mark calls it snoring. Says it sounds like a two-stroke engine with a holed exhaust doing 30 miles an hour in an echo chamber in second gear. Think that’s bad, my small dog is louder than me and she can snore when she’s awake. She does it at night when she feels that we are up too late. It’s really funny, 10 o’clock and she begins.

I have got a ladder, but it’s made of very fine fibres and it can snap at any point. Take Christmas. Please take it, take it away. It’s that one occasion that takes a year to save for, six months to shop for, three weeks to panic about, one day to celebrate and then two weeks to clear up after, and twelve months to pay off.

I’m not the only one that starts January with the full intention of putting pennies away for Christmas, am I? Along with money for holidays, birthdays, insurance, TV licence, Car tax and all the other yearly expenses. I’m not the only one that encounters disasters along the way, burst pipes, worn boots, tumble dryers blowing up, vet bills? I could have made it through, I could have had the savings there, but I wanted to go away with my husband this year. We only got one chance and we took it. Christmas savings gone! And I’m at the bottom of the ladder again. I juggle, if I belonged to a circus I’d be bloody famous for my money juggling act and I would rake in a fortune. But I’d still get sad.

You see Christmas is for us, a pain in the arse. We don’t celebrate, we don’t believe in Father Christmas, although I must admit I do like to test the “Is he real, theory?” out as often as possible. Hold on to your kids at this time of year, for us more mature women really don’t mind borrowing them to go and see Father Christmas. To sit on his knee and give him a hug. I remember one year, Father Christmas looked remarkably like The Texan Reverend from the local Church. Did I sit on his knee? Of course, I did. He didn’t refuse my request.

Then there is the Jesus thing. Good bloke by all accounts. He was a bit of a likely lad though, wasn’t he? I mean think about it. In todays World he would be a bit like Noddy Holder of Slade. A part of a group that became famous, like the Church was back then. Then he disappears for a few years, Jesus was just one of the crowd until he was thirty, then bam, fame again for a few years, before he got hung out to dry. We still play the Slade song, “Oh I wish it could be Christmas every day”, so both Noddy and Jesus tend to pop up every year at the same time. But I don’t worship either, doesn’t mean I don’t believe in neither of them, I just think they were decent guys.

I’m sitting here struggling to get my head around the presents I’ve bought, I don’t do Christmas.

I’m thinking about the Christmas Cake I have to ice, the mince pies I have to make, the puddings I made last month, but I don’t do Christmas.

I’ve the crackers and the advent calendars up, but I don’t go in for all the Christmassy stuff, I don’t do Christmas.

I’ve got the funny t-shirts and the frumpy red jumper with the bells on it, but I’m not a Christmas person, I just don’t do Christmas.

So please take Christmas away. It’s killing me, it’s making me smile and laugh, I’m getting excited about seeing my daughter, I’m having fun choosing strange and weird and wonderful things for different people, and I love baking cakes and planning dinners.

But I’m still sad. You see, I’m a pagan, and I love celebrating Yule as a time of year when we look up and realise that things are cold and bleak and soon the tide will turn and things will start to get better. We chose Yule as our wedding day and three year ago it was a brilliant celebration. But once the celebration is over we are all going to be in the same boat. The stark reality that when the decorations come down we will see the faded wallpaper. When the gifts are put away the people will go with them, back to being miserable along side us. So there has to be something we can do about it. We have to sort this ladder thing out before this time of year ends. The fibres will be thread bare by the time January hits us.

In my case, the onslaught of family with get on my nerves, you know how it is, great to see them, a relief to see them go. Go on be honest, we all feel the same way.

Traipsing around the shops will lose its appeal, the sales will be on and whilst all you need is a loaf of bread and a pint f milk there are always people in the supermarket, trying to nab the bargains and causing havoc. I pray that nothing electric breaks down over the holiday period, there is nothing worse than fighting your way through bargain hunters. Don’t get me wrong I love to haggle and usually do and get away with murder, but I’m a pro, not a seasonal hunter. I’ve got a certificate in getting discounts.

This year I’m prepared, I’ve strung my ladder and I’m ready to make the climb out of the post-Christmas slump. I’m going to do it in style. It’s not going to cost me a fortune, I’ve set myself up to be a fool. Not for a fall, to be a fool, because I want to be happy, not sad.

Indoor Skydiving in January and by April I want to be galloping around fields on horseback like a fool. Trust me, I don’t want to be falling off any horse.

Christmas is coming,
The girls are getting fat
It’s going to cost a fortune,
And I’m not wearing a funny hat.

There, that’s the Christmas poetry over with. What sing? Do you really want me to shatter every eardrum within four miles?

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