Well, I hope you don't mind me sharing some thoughts with you...
I saw my Mum just now and the awful way she's feeling right now reminded me that there are a lot of wonderful, kind, loving and caring people out there who, through no fault of their own and for whatever reason, are having a horrible time right now.
Sometimes it's too easy to get carried away with the Christmas preparations that we lose the focus of what the holiday is actually about. Many of us feel like we have to force that 'jolly Christmassy feeling' for other people, when inside all we want to do is curl up under our duvet on Dec 24th and stay there 'til Jan 2nd. I remember feeling this way not so long ago, so I totally understand.
For those of us who are starting to get all excited and Christmassy (ie; me!) there's absolutely nothing wrong with that - enjoy yourselves and share that joy - but spare a thought for those who won't be enjoying it, because they can't: the sick; the lonely; the abused; the neglected; those deep in debt and those in downright poverty. Some of those smiling faces you'll see at the office party or across the Christmas dinner table may be masking a very different emotion.
Is there someone in your life who could do with a bit of support or attention right now? A friend, family member, neighbour or perhaps a colleague at work? Send them a card or even an (anonymous) gift. Spread the Christmas love without making them feel like they have to reciprocate or put on a smile when what they really want to do is cry. Your simple little RAK (random act of kindness) might just make their day and restore their faith in humanity.
I'm not trying to bring anyone down, honest, but I was given a short, sharp shocking reminder today; after the hustle and bustle of the shops and the queue to meet Father Christmas and the Band Aid single playing in every shop; that it's not a jolly holiday for so many. I myself am having to keep to a very strict budget this year so I can sympathise with the millions affected by the worldwide recession, not to mention those in the developing countries who'd be lucky to have clean water to drink on Christmas Day, let alone a fat turkey with all the trimmings.
Let's not kid ourselves here: Christmas is the time for excess and presents and pulling crackers and then wearing the silly paper crowns and reading the corny jokes; but it's also about the spirit of giving itself, in whatever way that manifests itself. I'm a devout Christian, so my reasons for celebrating Christmas are religious, but whatever your belief (or non-belief) I wish you all peace on Earth and goodwill to all men (and women) - and if you can't have that then I at least wish you the Christmas you desire.
Goodnight and God bless,