Monday, December 21, 2009

Seasons Greetings...

I cannot believe there is only four days until Christmas and then a week after that it will be 2010. 2010! According to "Back to the Future" we'll have flying cars and hoverboards within the next five years, "Blade Runner" says we'll have off-world colonies in ten years and "Bicentential Man" said we would have robot's that do everything from house cleaning to baby-sitting. Hmmm, I suddenly feel a bit ripped off! At least we're not all wearing identical daggy jumpsuits and infested with aliens.

Unlike most people, I actually loathe this time of year. Really, I hate it with a passion. When I say this to people, they look at me oddly and say "But it's Christmas!" Yes, I'm aware and I detest it all. I hate shopping for presents for people I hardly know. I hate the insane road rage, store rage, car park rage, queuing in line rage and snatching the last item off the shelf rage. I think the whole world needs to take a Valium.

I also hate the having to get together with relatives I only ever see at Christmas. I don't blame them for not calling me, I don't call them either. I'd be happy to just send cards and not get together at all. I hate the pretense. You're not interested in me, I'm not interested in you. Let's call a spade a spade, shake hands and be on our merry way.

I hate the phone calls from people I haven't heard from in years who have had some kind of "revelation" and decide that now they need to rekindle old friendships. This year I've already had three, one who's sobered up (Step 9 - Make amends), one who's divorcing and one who's moving cross country. I'm happy for you, but please, if our friendship was that strong, we never would have drifted apart in the first place. We should catch up. Yes, but we won't because you're an annoying whinger and I'm too paranoid about not being able to find a toilet.

I've lived in small apartments pretty much since I left home as a teenager and there is just no room to put up a Christmas tree. I tried it once and I lost count of the number of times I tripped over it. I was picking up pieces of shattered baubles for months. Now that we're all adults and living in separate house holds, the gift giving has gone from thoughtful gift-wrapped surprises to just asking straight out what each other wants. We're all too busy and just a little bit lazy. I miss the childlike excitement of creeping out to a tree laden with presents on Christmas morning.

But mostly (and this is the nuts and bolts of it) I hate the fact that the whole holiday period is founded on overindulgence of food and alcohol and I can't indulge at all in most of it, let alone overindulge. People just don't get how sick overindulging can make someone with actively flaring Crohn's disease.

Picture it:
The family is sat around the table scoffing down mountains of food like it's their last supper. I politely decline the baked potatoes dripping in butter and garlic.
"Go on, it's Christmas!" someone, who by now has had at least 3 lots of "seconds" and twice as many brandy's, urges me, waving the bowl under my nose. It's torture, but nothing on what would follow if I actually ate them.
"Yes, but my Crohn's monster doesn't care what season it is." I calmly explain. "You don't seem to understand, there are 20 people in this house and only two toilets."

Meanwhile the rest of them pig out on baked potatoes and pumpkin and roast chicken and pork with crackling and apple sauce and ham and turkey. Plum Pudding with brandy sauce and fruit cake and mince pies and custard. Coleslaw and potato salad and lettuce with baby tomatoes. Fruit salad and punch spiked with vodka. Icy cold beers with slices of lemon, scotch with soda and vodka and lime. Prawns and oysters and crayfish and scallops. Crap, now I'm hungry.

With the Crohn's flaring every other day, and the strictures and the obstructions and the aches and the pains my diet is pretty limited. There isn't a whole lot on the Christmas menu that I can actually eat. When you take away the food, the alcohol, the presents and the tree, what exactly is there to enjoy? It's just a major pain in the arse. I joke every year that I'm going to take a holiday to some tropical island and lay on the beach from December 23rd right through to January 3rd. Although I'm photosensitive from the medication so I'd actually be inside looking at the beach through the window!

Bah-Humbug lol!

I'm not really an old scrooge and to prove it, below is my favorite Looney Tunes Cartoon as my gift to you. Enjoy!

Merry Christmas!



  1. I hear ya. I have next to no Christmas spirit, but saying so makes you sound bitter and twisted. I don't like the crowds in the shops, I don't care about getting presents, I hate the commercialism of it (not that I care about the real reason for it either) and I don't really care to spend much time with my extended family.

    I do like the eating bit, though I will probably suffer for it too, but not as severely as you by the sound of it. I understand what you're up against to some extent. That "Go on, a little bit won't hurt" mentality, while well-meant, is quite enfuriating.

    To me, Christmas means spending time with my mum and having some time off work and I do look forward to that.

    And I love the Three Little Bops too!

  2. Great blog! As someone living with Crohn's for 24yrs I can relate to so much of what you have shared. Awareness is VITAL - I invite you to join it's a social/support network for people living with Crohn's along with the family and friends as they need support too. I created it on 9/24/09 and to my shock as of today (12/21/09) there are 218 members. Being able to connect, and share with others who TRULY understand has been incredibly cathartic! Keep up the great work on the blog. I look forward to reading more.