Christmas has always been my favorite time of year. From the birth of Christ to sharing quality time with loved ones, it has always been something that has been both overhyped and overdone in my household. Not only Christmas but the entire Holiday season. Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, you name it, I am decorating for it. However, this year feels completely different.
Halloween came and went and I remember feeling so upset that I did not do more. I spent a lot of time by myself, did not go to one costume party, and let the time slip away from me.
Thanksgiving came and went all the same. I worked the week of and ended up sick in bed Thanksgiving day. Another holiday, gone.
However, I told myself that Christmas would not be the same. I was going to be happy and positive, truly in the Christmas spirit. I would ignore the voices in my head and the weight of not being able to get out of bed in the morning. I would fix it. I had to fix it. It was Christmas time and it was selfish of me to not be in the spirit.
With Christmas approaching quickly, I am beginning to realize a number of things. Christmas used to be so exciting because I was spending it with family, writing my long list to Santa, and drink hot cocoa while decorating the tree. I had no responsibilities. I was not the adult.
However, over the past couple of years, this has completely dwindled.
The home I grew up in is no longer a home I can go back to. My family has slowly grown apart, and the holidays seem closer to being a time of dread rather than that of "peace, joy, and love." In times where all you want to do is hide under your blankets from the world, how can you incorporate the Christmas spirit?
The worse my anxiety and depression get, the more I am called to remember the true meaning of Christmas: the birth of Jesus Christ. The fact that God the Father sent his son to rid of us our sins and hurts. A clean slate.
The word clean slate means many things to me. The fact that tomorrow is not going to be like today. I can start fresh and brand new.
A clean slate also means I am not what I have done. I can move forward and improve. Learn from my mistakes, and begin again. My failures from last year do not define my success of today. Ultimately, is Christmas not a time to remember to look at the good?
I am not saying that your anxiety and depression will disappear if you wish for it too. I am not saying that YOU yourself can fix this anxiety and depression. It is going to be a battle, one I have been going through for months now, but Christmas reminds me why I keep pushing through it: because God does not give me anything more than I can handle. It will get better.
I pray if you're struggling with the mental health that God rids it from you. I pray that you can see the joy around you not only during this Holiday season but every day. It is a battle, but we will get through it.