It is that time of year again when it’s not only bells that are ringing but tills with money spent on gifts that we hope will not be returned on Boxing Day to our ears from hearing that song by Slade or The Pogues again and again. The days have become shorter and shorter as ‘to do’ lists get longer and longer only matched by the queues everywhere we turn. The excitement reaches near hysteria as we count down to that man’s arrival with his herd of reindeer to deliver gifts on the 25th, but only if we have been good of course! For some it is extra special for marks the birth of the son of their god in a stable in area of the world that today tears of joy have been replaced by grief and blood.
Those that find themselves more ‘bah humbug‘ than ‘ho ho ho‘ are seen as the party poopers but we have to remember some of us may find it hard to find “that perfect gift” for family and loved ones, whereas others do not know if they can afford the cranberry sauce let alone the turkey or where they will be living tomorrow as the street may become home. There are of us those that live with hidden illness, from mental health to chronic pain, which want the feelings of sadness, darkness and/or pain to go away once and for all, not what Snapchat filter shall I use on my selfie today or which programs do I watch on my new giant TV first. There are also some of us that have nobody to celebrate with, as feel suffocated by the so called ‘magic’ not hypnotised.
When the clock strikes midnight on the 25th of December just remember it is but one day; it does not matter if we mark it or not for there is nothing to say we must celebrate, no matter what anyone may try to tell us otherwise. Do not feel guilty for not giving a physical gift because every day we give a bit of ourselves to those we love and those that appreciate, accept, and respect us for who we are, making an effort to be in our lives, remember this and know it can never be bought or sold. Finally, accepting who we are and what we have now not what we’d like to be/have or were/had, as well as accepting and respecting others irrespective of differences is the magic of Planet Earth not just on this one day or time of year, and spreading peace, light and love everywhere.
We have now entered the time of year that a dangerous and highly contagious disease is at its peak for symptoms. The disease is called “Santaphobos“, although not fatal in itself, the disease does get progressively worse every December.
The origins of Santaphobos are uncertain, however recent research has shown overexposure to children to under the age of ten to an older obese gentleman with a white beard, dressing in red and white, chanting “ho, ho, ho” and goes by the name of Santa Claus as a key factor.
Those that sat on the knee of someone matching the above description often cried at the time but their tears were ignored as he is meant to be a sign on good. Also this gentleman would ask them questions such as what they wanted for Christmas that they did not want to answer as for the rest of the year their parents told them never to talk to strangers!
To ensure the children behaved they are also told this person will come down their chimney if they are good and deliver them gifts with his reindeer friends on December the 25th. Unfortunately, it is the lies the parents tell repeatedly at this time in his name that may result later in “Grumpy Teenager Syndrome” as the child no longer believe what they’re told by the parents.
Symptoms vary with every individual as each case is unique. However, tell tale signs may include:
Mentioning the word “Christmas” results in the response “bah humbug”;
The sound of crackers and/or party poppers makes them pop a blood vessel;
The idea of eating turkey makes them clench their stomach and feel sick;
Constantly changing the radio to avoid Christmas carols and Cliff Richard;
The idea of an office party makes them flashback to drinking, dancing and vomit;
If male, shaving their movember beard as don’t want to be mistaken for him.
There is no known cure for Santaphobos but remember it is optional to join in Christmas, and nobody should feel they have to give cards or gifts to show how much they love someone as in our thoughts and actions all year. A gift of an hour with loved ones can mean far more than a bottle of wine or diamond ring. Even spending that hour with a friend or neighbour that has no one. Finally, remember it is not a jolly time for everyone, so be respectful to those with Santaphobos as with any other physical or mental disease.