Do you remember when you were a child it seems liked you needed permission for every thing? We had to ask our parents permissions to go to a friend’s house. Our teachers had to give us permission to talk or even go to the restroom. Well now that we are adults we sometimes need to give ourselves permission—and sometimes we can give it to each other!
Today I am giving myself permission not to hang the outside Christmas lights this year. My husband and I usually put lights on the low evergreens in front of our porch. When the weather was nice, I had the flu one weekend, and then it was freezing cold the next. We kept thinking it would happen—decent weather, both of us home at the same time, etc.—but since this hasn’t been the case, we will take the lights to the basement today. Maybe next year.
We also gave each other permission not to buy each other gifts this year. We just couldn’t think of anything that we truly wanted except new bath robes, so we sat down at the computer and ordered two robes. Now we are both done and can focus on other things.
Over the past several years I have given myself lots of permission in many different areas at the Christmas season. It is a part of making my expectations realistic and realizing the Christmas perfection doesn’t exist. I am human, and I have a limited amount of time, energy, and money. Based on the year and my current resources, I must make choices and grant myself permission.
I’m hoping you will do the same. Think of something where you need to grant yourself permission this year. Do you need to postpone your holiday letter until January or skip sending Christmas cards all together this year? Is there a party you want to bow out of and go to bed early one night? What can you scratch off your to-do list, and say, “Not this year”? I don’t know your situation, but if you can’t give yourself permission, then I am giving you permission. Permission granted!
By Marlene Depler