MERRY CHRISTMAS! (& A Mini Meltdown)

Happy Christmas Eve! But let me apologize for being M.I.A. I’m sure I’ve lost most of you by now (I’m scared to look at the analytics!), but it was completely unexpected. My daughter ended up having a nasty stomach virus (that closed down her classroom), my husband has the flu (still), and at one point last week after having to cancel a very important meeting with new clients, sitting in the middle of my living room cleaning up vomit, feeling the weight of the world on me as the realization strikes that I’m going to be letting all of my clients down over the next week and not be able to accomplish much on my enormous Christmas to-do list…I had a mini meltdown.

But you know, it’s at these times that you really have to pull yourself together, accept it, figure out a plan of attack, and move on. Otherwise, you become immobilized and nothing will get done. And just when I let go of having to be/do everything for everyone, my daughter with a 102F fever is crying out to me because she’s so miserable, and you think to yourself, “Nothing else really matters right now.”

So, the cards just got mailed yesterday. I still have some shopping to do today. Baked goods have gone unbaked. And all those fun D.I.Y. crafts, gift lists, and a giveaway I had planned had to be pushed aside. And I’m ok with that. Because I have to be.

But it got me thinking about all the pressure that women put on themselves to “make Christmas happen.” Hey ladies, when our guys were single they weren’t sending out personalized Christmas cards, bringing hostess gifts and dishes to holiday parties, theme-decorating their homes and fancy-wrapping their gifts, and certainly weren’t cooking up cookies and Christmas crafts! Is all that really necessary? Is that what makes Christmas?

So maybe we take some of that self-applied pressure off of ourselves, make that to-do list smaller, and enjoy the little moments…like singing Christmas carols in the car with my daughter as we’re sitting in an hour of Christmas boat parade traffic. Because really, in these moments the memories are made. That’s the Christmas lesson I learned this year. And I’m having a blast.

Hope you all enjoy your holiday…each and every moment!

Photo and styling by Erika Brechtel
Erika Brechtel

Erika Brechtel

Creative Director

Desiring an online space to explore well-rounded, inspired content in all topics she loves most, Erika created 'The E List' (formerly the Small Shop blog) in 2010. When not enjoying an “occasional" glass of wine and wanderlusting for even warmer climates, Erika can be found sharing laughs with friends and family, and trying her very best to keep up with her 6-year old daughter (yet failing miserably).

  1. Merry Christmas to you and yours! I’ve been keeping up with your blog for a couple of years now and love my daily dose. It’s okay to take time off to be with your family that needs you right now. Don’t worry about all of us, we understand bc we’ve all been there. Prayers for your family are going out now:))

  2. glad to know that I am not the only one who had a meltdown. I think we need a holiday song….all about this… we ladies have high expectations during the holidays.
    happy and healthy holiday to you and yours.

  3. I took a break this year and had been getting complaints non-stop. Then my 21 month old daughter went to the er with respiratory complications and I stopped feeling guilty. Your right, everyone will survive without baked goods and Xmas crafts for one year;) Happy Holidays!

  4. So sad to hear that your little one was sick. That’s never fun for either one of you! And you are totally right about the pressures women put on themselves. A lot of times I over estimate how much I can handle and in the midst of things I find myself stressed and annoyed at people who are care free and having fun. I’ve learned that somethings I’ve simply got to let go. The result? I’m a LOT more happier !

  5. Love and appreciate the honesty of this post. We welcomed our tiny peanut 6 weeks early after a very scary few days via an emergency c-section and so much went undone this xmas because we were spending our time at the NICU with her. It was at the moment that the dr said both of you are in danger that I realized how much, baby shower thank you’s, blog posts, work and even xmas shopping did not mean a darn thing!

    life is not life without the things that matter most. Hope 2014 bring you lots of great things, you deserve it!

    Natalie @ DRB

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