The day after Thanksgiving two words come out of hibernation: Merry Christmas. I appreciate the kindness from strangers, but I don’t celebrate Christmas. Can’t everyone say Happy Holidays; doesn’t it mean the same, yet not make others feel excluded?
When driving my three year old to her friend’s house, I pointed out her beautiful Christmas tree glowing through the window.
Her response was obvious, “I want a Christmas tree.”
“We don’t celebrate Christmas, we celebrate Hanukkah.”
“I don’t want to celebrate Hanukkah.” Then she continued, “How about when I’m four I can celebrate Christmas?”
“But, we are Jewish and don’t celebrate Christmas.” I said.
“I don’t want to be Jewish,” my girl pouted.
I patiently attempted to explain that we don’t have a choice; it is just the way it is. But, honestly it is a hard concept for a child to comprehend.
My kindergartener complained that his best buddy has been giving him a hard time for not celebrating Christmas. He also has been sharing how kids in his class have “this elf that sits on a shelf and moves to different parts of the house every day.” I love the idea of the elf and think it might even help my kids to listen, but Santa doesn’t come to our house.
We all feel excluded. I don’t blame those that celebrate Christmas, I’m happy for all of you to enjoy your holiday.
I’ll suck it up for 23 more days.