Home for the holidays

After careful consideration, I’ve decided I’m going to enjoy the holidays this year.

Did you ever notice that as you get older, the holidays become more stressful? And, frankly, I can’t think of a non-stressful Christmas holiday since …

In college, there was the year I got into a car accident. That was the year after my mother and I argued the entire Christmas break.

Then, I got into the workforce.

There was the year my brother called my parents, who were visiting in Colorado, and chewed my mother out for no good reason, other than for him to serve the purpose of being a holiday-ruiner and life-ruiner.

There was the year a coworker decided he wanted to make my life hell (at the urging of another coworker), at the same time I was considering taking a job in another part of the country.

There were several years I was called into commission to write a story – including two years in which I worked Christmas Eve. One year, I did it because a coworker “didn’t feel like coming into work” that day. Another year was because a story broke on my beat that afternoon, and I had a laptop and a phone with me. (Those aren’t complaints – it’s part and parcel of journalism.)

But after interviewing for a job out West last month – a job that I did not get – I thought for a bit about what I would have to do at one of the busiest and more stressful times of the year. It would mean packing up and moving my entire house, or at least some of it. It would mean driving across the country and leaving my husband. It would mean searching for a new place to live.

In addition to spending money on Christmas presents, preparing to host family and friends, visiting with family and friends …

It would mean not being able to fully enjoy a holiday for another year.