Holiday Stress

Don't get me wrong; I had a great day today.  I listened to Christmas music and did a good deal of baking (made oatmeal, chocolate chip and sugar cookies).  Wrapped all my presents and admired them under the tree.  But I also got some insight into how my family works. 

My mom was trying to finish up the last of her shopping online.  I made the mistake of suggesting she use my Amazon Prime account.  I logged her in on her iPad and started going about my business.  No, not good enough.  I had to be there to help her work through the menus (multiple presents going to multiple addresses that all needed to be entered).  My dad (who kept wandering away) had to be there to read her addresses from his ancient Palm.  We all needed to give input.  My mom started snapping at my dad for not staying nearby or for making phone calls.  And I was suddenly transported back to being a teenager.

My stress level went through the roof.  I was afraid of my mom suddenly lashing out at me (she didn't) and wanted to escape, wanted to make everyone happy, wanted us all to just relax and get along. What I didn't do was say anything about it.  As ever, once the shopping crisis had passed, my mom was lovely and nice again. I was relieved, but unsettled and insecure.  

But my cookies.  My cookies are amazing.  Wish I could share them with everyone who reads here. 

3 thoughts on “Holiday Stress

  1. Mija

    I’m sorry to hear that.
    I love her dearly and am glad we’re all going to be together at Christmas, but hadn’t realized the degree to which my mom added to my level of anxiety and crazy until just that moment.

  2. Zille Defeu

    You should ask Mr Defeu sometime about my mother asking him to fix her computer not only every time he comes over … but basically expecting free phone customer service from him as well!
    (And don’t get him started on what she was like when we all went to the UK. She couldn’t actually turn her computer on without him!)
    A recent funny moment you’ll appreciate: We were talking to her on the phone, and Mr Defeu joked, “You’d better get BBC America or we won’t be at your house on Christmas day!” (Actually, it was about the Dr Who Christmas special, so it wasn’t a joke!)
    My mother replied, “Oh, I don’t know if I get that sort of thing!”
    Me: “It’s part of a basic cable package, Mom.”
    Her: “Ah. So … do I get BBC America?”
    Me: Pause. “Look, Mom, I really can’t tell you what cable channels *you* get….”
    She honestly wanted us to tell her what her subscribed cable channels were! She never thought to go look up her subscription, or, you know, look at the piece of paper she keeps beside the remote which lists the channel’s numbers….


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