We didn’t write letters to Santa for the first time ever, and I felt terrible about it.
(But we saw him at the mall (finally) and I at least got my annual photo.)
We didn’t bake sugar cookies like we always do.
The kids had the tree half-decorated before I even left my office.
We didn’t make salt dough ornaments.
I did make them matching jammies for the first year ever … but they found them too hot. They didn’t wear them to bed and I didn’t make them put them on the next morning for opening presents.
We didn’t make gingerbread men.
We didn’t drive around and look at the lights.
We did do our annual neighbour delivery of homemade caramel corn and chocolate caramel crack, but it just about killed me and I didn’t enjoy it like I normally do.
There were a lot of things we didn’t do this year, whether it’s because I wasn’t feeling up for it or I was working too much (without childcare) and feeling totally stressed out or I was especially overwhelmed about everything that had to be done.
But I also stopped putting as much pressure on myself.
We watched all of the Christmas movies we love — all three Santa Clauses, Elf, and The Grinch. We ate popcorn every time.
I didn’t go nuts with the gifts (a combination of not having the money to go nuts, not having the time to shop my brains out, and … just not feeling it). I feel good about that.
I put on a super-soft new pair of jammies (a gift from my in-laws) on Christmas Day, in the evening, and didn’t take them off my body until the 27th when I showered. It was glorious and totally unlike me.
I spent time with my family and remembered what it feels like to do absolutely nothing. I took an actual break for two full days — 25th and 26th — and although I cleaned and organized like a maniac on the 27th I didn’t work.
When I got back to work today, I flew through my assignments and calls like I was on speed. So, yeah, taking a real break was clearly a good idea. I needed it.