Just Not That Into It // Everyone has their own tipping point. What do you hate about the holidays?
I hate the “otherness” that I feel. I haven’t fully connected with a group of close Jewish friends here. And with my husband’s Christian family, I find myself saying “Christmas shopping” much more than “Hanukkah shopping” anymore. I don’t want to lose sight of my own heritage, but I find more and more that Hanukkah takes a back seat to my husband’s family’s Christmas celebration. That part is more sad than hateful. I certainly don’t hate his family for it – they welcome me and try to include my traditions (like latkes and candle lighting).
No, I hate the “Happy Holidays” vs “Merry Christmas” battle. It makes me feel more like an outsider every time someone posts a tirade about stores saying one instead of the other. Choosing sides here automatically excludes so many others. I absolutely understand that Christmas is one of the most religious holidays on the Christian calendar (presents aside) and that Hanukkah holds relatively low religious power; the debate is as polarizing in my mind as gun control. And while it seems a bit ridiculous to draw that much of an extreme parallel, I do so only to illustrate that it falls into the same “no-win” argument. I try to roll with it, knowing that I am in the minority. There’s probably a bit of deflection wrapped up in my head: it is hard to be in the minority and feel marginalized year after year. But it’s not about making Hanukkah mainstream (it’s still not a major holiday – and making it into one to compete with Christmas feels misplaced).
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