Christmas didn’t feel like itself this year

Published 10:16 am Monday, January 4, 2016

I don’t want Christmas to be over. I don’t know if anyone ever really wants it to be over, but this year I really, really think it’s gone too far away, too fast.

The hotter than average temperatures, the humidity, the storms really put a damper on the Christmas cheer I look forward to every year. It never really felt like Christmas, not to me. I didn’t really buy many Christmas presents this year because I knew I wouldn’t be seeing my friends during December.

Four days before Christmas in hard rain I scooped up a few small gifts for cousins, aunts and my parents, with less then usual thought put into them and honestly less money spent than in years past. They finally got wrapped on Christmas Day no less, and were carted off to my aunt’s house and hastily handed out as if the Christmas rush was still pushing me to get it completed. I didn’t really even watch them open their gifts.

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Midnight mass was uncomfortable because I felt icky from the oppressive humidity, my eyes burned from a mix of sweat and makeup and my eyelids did not want to stay open from the fatigue brought on by working a seven-hour day and taking a five-hour drive.

Not enough Christmas music was on the radio, not enough lights were on display in my parent’s neighborhood like used to be in my childhood. Now I know these things aren’t what Christmas is really about, but they sure do set the mood.

Sure it’s cliché, but as a child we think Christmas will never get here and as an adult each year gets shorter and shorter, and Christmas is gone before we realized it even started.

On my way back to Vicksburg I noticed lights were already dark and trees were taken down. Once I got to my place, many of my neighbors had put up their decorations already. For me, this is unacceptable. I may be selfish in saying it, but I don’t think we should be hasty in ending the season.

In the Catholic and Episcopal churches, Christmas is still celebrated through the feast of the Epiphany, which is Jan. 6 or 12 days after Christmas. I’m glad to have my decorations still burning bright.

I may be an eternally cold natured person who loves summer, but I am enjoying the chilly temperatures that have made their way to Vicksburg the past few days. Even though it’s a little more fall feeling than winter, it’s finally cool enough to feel like Christmas. Sunday was a perfect fall day, and I’m OK with that. Fall is better than winter anyway.

As much as I enjoy a large warm sun beating down on me, there is something to be said for an overcast day.

Something about the gray skies and the naked brown branches sticking up to decorate the skyline brings a cozy feeling. I think of hot beverages and fluffy blankets.

Even though I’ll take down my wreath and windowsill candle Thursday, I might just have a tree in my living room for a little longer. I’ll call it my Martin Luther King Jr. Day tree.