I'm afraid that this post will come off a bit hum-buggish, but it's something I think needs to be said.
Not everyone is having a 'Merry Christmas'. It's not because they have anything against the season, please understand, or that they wish any poor sentiments against those who are enjoying the season and its joy. But they have reasons to feel a bit differently, and in some cases do not want to be told how they should be feeling or act.
In my case, I admit to a certain grimness at present. While I am generally an optimist, the past year has done my family some damage. My father passed away in April, which is weighing my mother down at present as she has to go through the first Christmas without him. She also had about a thousand dollars worth of plumbing repairs which had to be done. My brother, three years older than me, has a badly-paying, no-chance-of-promotion job and is showing some hand tremors which may - long story - be the warning signs of long-feared Parkinson's disease. One of my sisters had to undergo surgery on her thyroid, and as soon as she recovers from that she is schedule to have spine surgery as well. And of course, a few weeks ago I was diagnosed with cancer, a variant which has no known cure and while slow-growing, kills half of its victims within ten years of its first symptoms. I find myself distinctly less than bouyant this Christmas season.
I certainly am aware that other members here have their own trials and difficulties, and I do not mean, at all, for this to be a 'poor me' thread. But while I remain determined and hopeful in the main, and I still thank God for all the good things he has given me (I will never forget how lucky I am to have Mikki and Jagan in my life, nor my good friends) I am not in the mood - at all - to act as if I do not have a care in the world, or to perform on demand some pretense to jollity. When someone insists that I need to just 'be happy', I find myself inclined to find a shotgun and look for flying reindeer to shoot. Anyone resembling an elf would also do well to steer clear of me.
Enjoy your holidays as you please, and be as merry as you like, but please do not demand that people must act a certain way. Joy may not be imposed, and even now there are duties which may not be dismissed or put off, nor to my mind would it be seemly to forget them.