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Bah! Humbug!

November 26, 2006

I “feel” Scrooge’s disillusionment a bit …

It’s not a feeling that I want to dwell on or wallow in … but I do feel him.

It’s a difficult season for a single person.  Scrooge was single too, I reckon.

It’s difficult watching all the exchanges of love and good cheer take place … especially when every where you turn you are reminded of just how alone you are during this holiday season.

Good Christian friends will offer sage advice that truly one is not alone when they know and have the Lord.  I won’t argue with that.  But I do wonder if those words would bring them the comfort they want me to have from them … if the shoe were on the other foot.

I remember my last Christmas as a married person.  My daughters were four and two-years old.  We had experienced some downs in our marriage over the past six or seven months, but I thought things were on the upswing.  We had a good Christmas.  For the first time in our short marriage of five years, we were both working and were able to buy presents for each other.   We had decorated the house and it was a good season.

Three months later, he left.   And the next Christmas, and many, many after that were never the same.  We never really had time in our marriage and family to establish any traditions.  But, we always did try to enjoy Christmas best we could with our very, very large family.

The Christmas following our divorce was heartbreaking.  Suddenly, rather than spending Christmas with my children, I had to pack them up to go to the homes of people I’d never even met.  And there I was left to spend the holiday alone.  No matter if I found a friend or went to my mother’s house … I was still alone.

Having grown up as a child of divorce, I knew full well what it was like being spread out amongst estranged relatives and other people during the holidays.  For all my life, I never knew from one Christmas to the next what or where I’d be spending it.  And, seems too many years there was an argument about it.

I remember celebrating my first Christmas after I was saved … and suddenly feeling like I was experiencing Christmas for the first time in all my life.  And I was so excited about spending it with Kenny and his family … a family that had not been torn apart by divorce.  I was excited about experiencing Christmas … as a Christian.

I never wanted my children to have to be pulled and spread around at Christmas time.  I never wanted them to feel so insecure during such a blessed holiday season.

A few years back, Christie received a DVD of a video tape made of a Christmas she spent at her daddy’s a year or so after the divorce.  I watched it. (I probably should not have)  It broke my heart … thinking about the many years of separation and disconnectedness.  Wasted!

It seems like now, as I remember these “ghosts of Christmas past” that I was mighty glad when the season was over … and I could move on.   My… that is a “Bah-Humbug” attitude.

Oh, I’ve had a few years when I could busy myself with festivities … and distract from the obvious.  I’ve had a few years when I have stuffed the holidays with activities and people … so I would not sit and wallow in self-pity.  But, if I broke out the scrapbook of memories, I dare say we would all be in tears before it was finished being read.

I’ve noticed in many “present Christmases” that the blues do tend to set in about Thanksgiving … and they linger until after New Year’s Day.   And I’ve studied on it … studied myself enough to know it’s coming … and of late, I’ve realized that in this season, I grow weary of it.  And I wish it were not so!

Truthfully, as hateful and cantakerous as Scrooge was, I feel a bit sorry for him.  He had a broken heart, you know?  He lost his love, Belle, and this caused him to withdraw and disconnect and throw himself further in to his business and greed.  Yes, his drive for money and success seemingly drove her away and in to the arms of another … but isn’t it always something that places those distractions in our relationships when we are too young and full of ourselves to figure out what to do about it.  Then, it’s too late!

I don’t want to be a Scrooge. I don’t want to be lonely and cantakerous and “busy” — so I can’t experience and celebrate the holidays.  I don’t want to be withdrawn and disconnected … out of place.

I doubt that Scrooge did either, but maybe he just accepted an “anticipated” outcome as truth and that prohibited him from taking the chance to build and maintain relationships.  I suggest his “hardness” for only a front or defense mechanism … an attempt to disguise his pain — his broken heart.

Who knows … but that he had attempted to reach out (yes, I know it is a fictitious story — bear with me) and got no response at all … and was deeply saddened that he seemed destined to spend the rest of his life alone, with no one who might even be brave enough to take the chance to be his friend … to just spend a little time and talk with him.

The three ghosts that visit Scrooge help him to realize some things that transform his attitude and his life.

The visit from the last ghost — The Ghost of Christmas Yet To Come — helps him to realize that in order to change his future, he must change himself … his attitude … his perspective.


OH those ghosts of Christmas past … they really don’t haunt me that much.  I readily recognize the negative impact some of those memories have — I try to counter them with the good memories…the positive things … the lessons learned.

The trouble with Christmas present is that I’m hardly ever prepared … I never get to relax and enjoy the season … it comes and goes so quickly because perhaps I’m wishing it would.  I really want to stop that.

And as for Christmases Yet To Come — I’m just going to tell you — I really wish I’d never feel lonely and blue at Christmas again.  I got married on Christmas Eve … and I probably should not have done that.  Maybe that’s why it’s such a haunting time of the year.

Here’s the deal … I’ll forget about the “Bah-Humbug!”   And the Ghost of Christmas Past can take a holiday vacation.

Christmas Present will be just that … and I’ll take it one day at a time.

As for Christmas Yet To Come — I’m going to pray that God hears my heart and my prayer — I don’t want to feel alone and I don’t want to be alone anymore — I pray He feels (and fills) this need for me.

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