Have a holly jolly bankrupt Christmas


Valerie Bond, News Editor

I love Christmas. I mean LOVE Christmas.
I am that crazy person who puts their Christmas decorations up before Thanksgiving.
I love making cookies and watching cheesy holiday movies and generally just being crazy.
Growing up I decorated the Christmas tree with my siblings and stayed up late waiting for Santa; my little sister would shake me awake with every subtle rustle from the living room. I loved finding candy in my stocking and unwrapping the top trending toy I had been begging for. I loved having Christmas dinner at my grandparents and spending time with family in general.
I still love the food and the family time, but no longer do thoughts of sugar plums dance in my head.
When I think of Christmas I immediately think of money. I think of receiving money, how much money I need, and the general lack of money.
Christmas tree, Christmas lights, Christmas decorations, Christmas gifts, Christmas dinner, plus the bills that your parents or maybe you have to pay monthly. These are all the things a person has to pay for during the Christmas season.
There is one setback however. Sometimes people do not have the money for all these different parts and that’s where things get difficult. No longer is the holiday of Christmas a time of joy and celebration, it becomes a yearly struggle to make it by without going totally bankrupt.
I think there’s a certain point in every persons’ life where the receiving of gifts becomes pointless. Sometimes a gift is cheesy, unsatisfying or just plain undesirable. Of course I am polite and thank the gift giver with a smile and a hug, but internally I am sort of disappointed.
In order to prevent these feelings, society has developed the universal gift of money.
Money allows you to buy the ideal gift for yourself and that’s great yet people still yearn for the excitement and the surprise of unwrapping a gift and smiling uncontrollably because of the joy a simple gift can cause.
Another aspect of Christmas that is dependent on money is the act of giving a gift.
I love spending time perfecting individual gifts for all my friends and seeing them smile when the unwrap and laugh at the inside joke I try to incorporate into the gift.
But recently have I discovered the importance of having money to buy these gifts. I’ve reached the point in my life where I can’t ask my mom for a little money to help cover the cost for gifts for my friends because my mom has to have money to buy the groceries, pay the bills, get me and my sister to and from school and buy Christmas gifts for the family.
Every year in January when students come back from break, everyone is discussing what they got for Christmas, and while discussing there is this silent competition to have more expensive and elaborate collection of gifts then the kid next to you. In actuality is just a competition to see who’s parent maxed out their credit card the most.
I am pretty sure that anyone reading this will understand the other concept of money sometimes coupled with Christmas- the lack of money.
In today’s society, it is almost as if happiness and satisfaction are derived solely from having money.
I think this is completely and utterly stupid. My happiness should not and is not derived solely from money. Sure, money is great and not having money sucks, but in my life, especially my life during the Christmas season does not revolve around money.
I believe that Christmas should be a time celebrating the joys of family and friends. Christmas should not be focused on things that involve money, and yes I understand that a huge part of the holidays involve things that involve money.
People need to get away from thinking about Christmas with money. Christmas should not solely be about presents. Take time to enjoy your family and friends and be thankful for what you have and maybe give back to your community. Try donating money to organizations that help those in need. Donate food to the local food bank to help a family supply that Christmas dinner that you are privileged enough to enjoy. Try not to worry about the superficial and monetary aspects of Christmas. Try to spread some Christmas cheer, and yes, I realize how cliche that sounds.
Anyways I hope you and your family have a very merry Christmas and a happy New Year as well.