All I Want for Christmas is Some Xanax

So, I think I mentioned that we’re hosting Christmas this year.  Or maybe I didn’t.  Well, guess what?  We’re hosting Christmas.  You’re on notice.

The funny thing about this is that with four sets of parents and other extended family and whatnot, we won’t really have our entire family together, so it’s really more like half the family coming over, and Ed and I will make a couple of rounds to those who can’t make it.  So instead of last year’s Four Christmases-esque shenanigans, we’re down to two.  I’d much rather have people over to our house than run all over the place, so this is a huge win to me.  Plus we get to bust out the wedding china and other shmancy stuff and I can wear an apron and we can both freebase wine all day long since we don’t have to drive.  Good times.

Except.  Well.  It seems we are still expected to show up at my mom’s Christmas Eve and Christmas morning.  And Ed’s mom’s on the 23rd.  Apparently, “Hey guys!  We’re hosting Christmas this year!  Come on over!” roughly translates to “Hey guys!  We’ll be over whenever you want!  In between cooking and cleaning our own home.  We got this!”

I think it’s a little difficult for our moms some members of the family to accept us as being The Ones Who Are Hosting a Major Holiday for the Family.  Although we both feel welcomed by our respective in-laws, neither one of our families roll well with change and this is a big change on the heels of the wedding, which in itself was a big event.  This is sort of shocking to me with my own mom since she has never been big into Christmas.  Not that she’s ever been Scrooge-like, but she’s a pretty unconventional broad who is happy to try new things.  Our big tradition is drinking kaluha and cream.  Other than that?  Things are up for negotiation.  Ed’s family, on the other hand, is way more Hallmark about the holidays so I guess I shouldn’t have been shocked that his mom wants us all over at her place, despite the fact that it’s the least convenient, geographically speaking, and we won’t actually get to spend much time there.

Weirdly enough, my dad and Judy are being super cool about us not being there.  Hooray for the second/real family and replacement kid!  Thanks, Bubba! 

The irony of all this is that in my frustrated state of “Jesus, why can’t they just let us have this and let go and be cool already?” I realized that I wasn’t exactly being understanding that this new dynamic is a big deal for our parents too and maybe I could try to compromise a bit.  I know this intellectually.  But it still feels like we’re doing all the work of running around AND hosting.  Could someone tell me how this is fair?  Or should I just abandon the idea of “fairness” when it comes to interacting with our families?

What holiday compromises do you make to keep peace/ensure you get your inheritance?  When do you take a stand?


10 thoughts on “All I Want for Christmas is Some Xanax

  1. My husband’s parents are divorced but we never do anything with his dad and that side. We always do Christmas Eve with his mom because that’s a big thing with them. We ALWAYS do Christmas Day at my parent’s house. We have a big breakfast that’s the exact same breakfast every single year and I would be pissed if it wasn’t. Then we open presents, then we play games, then later in the day we eat the big dinner. I won’t budge on this day because it’s the only day that is my family’s tradition. No other holidays are generally important. I will give up any holiday throughout the entire year with my family if I can just have Christmas day. period. the end. And so I do give up Thanksgiving every year with my family…and it’s been this way for 5 years. And yet, every single year we get asked by my husband’s mom if we’ll be stopping by on Christmas Day. Um, no. I sound harsh but it’s like really? You are getting Thanksgiving AND Christmas Eve. Can’t I have one day?

    Wow I went to town on that comment.

    • Ha! I LOVE that you went to town on that comment! And I think you are justified in sticking to your Christmas guns with the MIL if you are willing to compromise on so many things.

      I’m fine with shuffling and rotating in a way (one year here, one year somewhere else), but I feel like once it was established that Christmas was at our house, it meant we wouldn’t spend half the weekend on I-5 running all over the place AND then taking on hosting duties.

      • I think we are gonna start hosting Thanksgiving next year and that way things seem more even, at least in my mind. Of course it will never be even in my MIL’s mind.

        I just can’t do shuffling, it takes too long driving all over town to see everyone. UGH. Makes me cringe just thinking about it.

        If you start the hosting thing now it will be PERFECT when y’all decide to have kids!! GO FOR IT!

  2. Oh, we couldn’t do shufflng all day – I mean like one year we are at my dad’s or his mom’s or our house. I feel like what we’re doing is insane – can we just stay in one place? For the love of Baby Jesus? I’d like to establish some sense of routine before we have kids since that is going to be a giant cluster. I’e already informed Ed that I am not above using our kid as a weapon or bargaining chip.

  3. Coming from the exact opposite of your holiday craziness, I think that you are lucky to have so many people who care enough to argue over when and where you will spend your holidays. Embrace that. You’ll miss it when it is gone.

    • Oh man, I know this little tirade came off as so ungrateful for our families but I really, truly am happy that we have all of our parents with us. Yesterday was the 20th anniversary of my Grandpa Frank’s death and I know that my mom would love one more birthday, Christmas, or even regular dinner with him, and we all miss him every day. My frustration isn’t about seeing everyone – if I had my way we’d all live in the same area code! But the guilt about not being able to please everyone starts to suck the fun out of the holidays, and it feels like someone inevitably ends up disappointed. I don’t like being the source of someone’s sadness, you know? But I think we finally managed to come up with a schedule that will make everyone happy (or happy-ish). It just takes time to get to that point.

      Is it New Year’s Eve yet? 😉 Can’t wait to celebrate that with more “family” – and champagne!

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