Now that Christmas is 365 days away, my job will be a little more clear cut. I've been waiting for this since early November. All I can say is, "hatchachacha!"
Now, onto Christmas past. This year Jared and I attended dinner at the Koehn's Friday night and lunch at my aunt and uncle's Saturday. Both events went over well, but I preferred Jared's gathering to mine. Not because I am choosing favorites, but because there are twice as many adults at my family's celebrations, and I become anxious in groups. I attribute this to basic paranoia multiplied in intensity from close familial proximity. Meaning, generally groups don't bother me, because I don't care what strangers nor acquaintances think; however, because I'm tied to these particular people and will be seeing them year after year, I care. I'm not afraid of making a bad impression. Instead, I get the sense that I already have and am currently in the process of living that down. And, no I have no idea what event/reputation I'm speaking about. It wouldn't be paranoia if it had grounds.
The other problem I have is not meant to insult my mother. I want to have that on record, because this isn't a problem with her it's a problem with me. My mother is a character. She displays herself with gusto using wide hand gestures and colorful language. She strains her face to contort to whatever mood she is trying to project. She is also loud. Personally, I see this as her way of dealing with the above paranoia that we both suffer from. Unfortunately, my way of dealing involves turning myself inward, buttoning my lip and waiting for time to move. Which means my mother attracting large amounts of attention to herself... makes me cringe inside. It's not that I'm embarrassed of my mother, because my mother is awesome. I just hate. hate. attention --- especially when I'm as anxious as large family gatherings make me.
The cliched truth that I'm digging at is that holidays are stressful. I have decided that hosting a large gathering is too much trouble, and I will forever be a guest in other people's celebrations.