Christmas As Told By Someone Who Doesn't Celebrate

Christmas As Told By Someone Who Doesn't Celebrate

Merry gift giving then I guess?
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It's officially the holiday season and many of us have been scrambling around finding last minute Christmas presents to give to our loved ones. Christmas has all sorts of meaning to it, but I don't think I've really found one for myself. I never knew what it truly meant to celebrate Christmas growing up because, as a Muslim individual who doesn't religiously celebrate the holiday in the first place, it was just another day for me.

I was told for as long as I can remember that we don't celebrate the holiday so there's no point in participating in all the cultural stuff either. I never really bought presents for my friends or family nor decorate the house, a tree, or participate in any of the other things people usually do during this time.

Let's back track a little to childhood version Maria who was in her first grade class. It was December time, a few days before our school's winter break, and many of my classmates were pumped and ready for Christmas. At that point, I never really knew what Christmas was even all about but I knew that it was considered a big deal to a majority of my class.

The one thing I specifically remember was the big mention of the infamous Santa Clause and how everyone in my class can't wait to see what he gets them this year. Again, as someone who was well aware of everything related to Christmas and how I don't celebrate, Santa Clause was one of those things I knew from the very beginning was, in fact, not real. My classmates would ask me if I was excited for the gifts I was going to get and if there was anything in particular, I really wanted from Santa. I knew they were clinging onto this false hope that this man who's going to give them great presents if they were nice this year actually exists. So I would simply smile and pretend like he existed and humor everyone else.

As I got older, and when everyone stopped believing in Santa, I still never really saw what's so special about the season. Of course, from a religious perspective, I couldn't relate at all. But what makes gift giving so special and why are people saving the best gifts for Christmas?

To keep this short and simple, I think I've finally figured out what it means to celebrate Christmas in my own way. I'm well into my third year of college now and I'm somehow found a handful of people who genuinely care about and love me. This year we all decided to do a Christmas gift exchange and, for once in my life, I was actually excited about buying presents for people. Isn't that weird? I was actually excited about buying presents, wrapping them in cute Christmas wrapping paper, and giving it to my friends to open.

Now, after this small journey of self-discovery, I realize now that Christmas means I can treat my friends during a bustling season. It means I can buy things for the people I love and see them be happy. I also means I can get together with the people I love and celebrate just being together, not necessarily a specific holiday.

So thus, everyone, I hope you all find what this season means to you too and I hope it's a great holiday!

Cover Image Credit: pixabay

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I'd Rather Be Single Than Settle – Here Is Why Being Picky Is Okay

They're on their best behavior when you're dating.
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Dating nowadays described in one word: annoying.

What's even more annoying? when people tell you that you're being too "picky" when it comes to dating. Yes, from an outside perspective sometimes that's exactly what it looks like; however, when looking at it from my perspective it all makes sense.

I've heard it all:

"He was cute, why didn't you like him?"

"You didn't even give him a chance!"

"You pay too much attention to the little things!"

What people don't understand is that it's OKAY to be picky when it comes to guys. For some reason, girls in college freak out and think they're supposed to have a boyfriend by now, be engaged by the time they graduate, etc. It's all a little ridiculous.

However, I refuse to put myself on a time table such as this due to the fact that these girls who feel this way are left with no choice but to overlook the things in guys that they shouldn't be overlooking, they're settling and this is something that I refuse to do.

So this leaves the big question: What am I waiting for?

Well, I'm waiting for a guy who...

1. Wants to know my friends.

Blessed doesn't even begin to describe how lucky I am to have the friends that I do.

I want a guy who can hang out with my friends. If a guy makes an effort to impress your friends then that says a lot about him and how he feels about you. This not only shows that he cares about you but he cares about the people in your life as well.

Someone should be happy to see you happy and your friends contribute to that happiness, therefore, they should be nothing more than supportive and caring towards you and your friendships.

2. Actually, cares to get to know me.

Although this is a very broad statement, this is the most important one. A guy should want to know all about you. He should want to know your favorite movie, favorite ice cream flavor, favorite Netflix series, etc. Often, (the guys I get stuck on dates with) love to talk about themselves: they would rather tell you about what workout they did yesterday, what their job is, and what they like to do rather than get to know you.

This is something easy to spot on the first date, so although they may be "cute," you should probably drop them if you leave your date and can recite everything about their life since the day they were born, yet they didn't catch what your last name was.

3. How they talk about other women.

It does not matter who they're talking about, if they call their ex-girlfriend crazy we all know she probably isn't and if she is it's probably their fault.

If they talk bad about their mom, let's be honest, if they're disrespecting their mother they're not going to respect you either. If they mention a girl's physical appearances when describing them. For example, "yeah, I think our waitress is that blonde chick with the big boobs"

Well if that doesn't hint they're a complete f* boy then I don't know what else to tell you. And most importantly calling other women "bitches" that's just disrespectful.

Needless to say, if his conversations are similar to ones you'd hear in a frat house, ditch him.

4. Phone etiquette.

If he can't put his phone down long enough to take you to dinner then he doesn't deserve for you to be sitting across from him.

If a guy is serious about you he's going to give you his undivided attention and he's going to do whatever it takes to impress you and checking Snapchat on a date is not impressive. Also, notice if his phone is facedown, then there's most likely a reason for it.

He doesn't trust who or what could pop up on there and he clearly doesn't want you seeing. Although I'm not particularly interested in what's popping up on their phones, putting them face down says more about the guy than you think it does.

To reiterate, it's okay to be picky ladies, you're young, there's no rush.

Remember these tips next time you're on a date or seeing someone, and keep in mind: they're on their best behavior when you're dating. Then ask yourself, what will they be like when they're comfortable? Years down the road? Is this what I really want? If you ask yourself these questions you might be down the same road I have stumbled upon, being too picky.. and that's better than settling.

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I'm Keeping My Christmas Tree Up All Winter And There's Nothing You Can Do About It

It's the WINTER Season... ;-)

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I think that my tree would not be considered Christmas-y if the ornaments are taken off and the lights are kept on. I think to just looks wintry. I am also keeping up decorations that say "let it snow", and I am keeping up any snowman without holly berries or presents in their hands.

The tree looks wintry in my opinion. It looks pretty with the lights and brings the room together. It gives off a warm ambiance, unlike that of fluorescent lighting.

I've taken all ornaments off except for gold snowflakes and I've left the silver tinsel garland on as well as the lights. It looks wintry to me still. I will probably be taking the whole tree down by the end of this month to prepare for Valentine's Day decorating. (Yes, I pretty much decorate my apartment for every holiday—sue me).

There's nothing like coming downstairs and seeing those lights sparkling.

Or coming inside from a dreary, rainy day outside and seeing them light up the room in a calm, warm, and comforting glow.

Or having a bad day, looking up, and seeing them shine.

It sort of makes me upset when I come downstairs and see that someone has unplugged them, to be honest.

I guess they don't see it as I do.

Pretty, twinkling lights forever!

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