*Cue the blood boiling from hoards of people, because the words Christmas & Humbug mentioned there…….
I didn’t plan on writing this post, but I felt compelled to do so, as tonight I shall be attending an event, which is in partnership with ‘Kids Company’. & With Christmas just around the corner my thoughts just wouldn’t leave me. Like an itch needing to be scratched, the more I tried ignoring them, the louder they became in my mind (no, I’m not nuts, just passionate)
I don’t get into the ‘swing of things’ quite as much as others, around the festive period it seems. My memories of Christmas from my ‘yoot are great: spent in the tropics, these experiences couldn’t be further from the traditions here in the UK.
The culture of where I grew up was predominantly Malay, & the natives were conservative Muslim. There were no Christmas adverts on TV (then again, tv wasn’t that big out there, & media in general then, was a far cry form the present day) & only a handful of shops decked themselves out in Crimbo decorations. The expat community always threw festive celebrations at a local clubhouse, & the sense of ‘coming together’ & camaraderie felt strong.
So then, perhaps it’s these cultural differences I still need to get my head around & adjust to? Maybe it is acceptable for companies to shove their Christmas propaganda down my throat in October? Nope, I’m sorry, I don’t buy it (granted, Monty the penguin from the John Lewis ad is adorable)
To me, the lead up to Christmas starts in December: It isn’t about the latest fads & fashions, or who gets the most presents. Of course, it’s wonderful to receive a gift, after all who doesn’t love that anticipation of guessing what’s inside & either ripping open the wrapping paper, or carefully unsticking it to preserve for another use? (Reduce, reuse, recycle, or am I just a tight ass? Rhetorical question)
It isn’t about dinner with all the trimmings, or arguments that will inevitably erupt over who gets the TV remote.
I’m not ungrateful, & I apologise if this comes across as such. Honestly? I’m just mindful. I find it hard to accept that whilst we act in a materialistic way (even despite our best efforts), there are others in the world who will go without: Will be fighting for their lives against hunger, poverty, disease, & those caught up in wars. The list goes on.
I feel blessed to be surrounded by loved ones, & share precious time with them, in a safe & comfortable environment. But the feeling of guilt never quite leaves me, for those who are not as fortunate.
As a teenager & young adult, I went through an awkward stage I’m sure most of us did, where the whole festive season was a bit, well, drab? Additions to the family of nephews & nieces then injected a new fondness for Jolly St. Nick . Most recently with the arrival of Bear, I will admit, I can see the magic. At 3 years old, he is much more aware of his surroundings & the whole Santa malarkey. *Hands up* I confess, I’ve been taking full advantage of Santa, as a parenting tool for good behaviour, oops.
He will have presents (just between you & me, he has been a very good boy) & I’m not going to lie, I can’t wait to see his face opening them & the joy of him encountering this enchanting time of year. But, the importance of caring & sharing towards others less fortunate than us, & how we should endeavor to ‘spread the Christmas cheer’ is a high priority. My parents have always been avid charity supporters & set a great example for me, I hope to follow suit (I have been know to gift ‘goats’ in the past)
Being a parent has changed me beyond recognition, emotionally. & I couldn’t help but feel obliged to share this video from Kids Company CEO Camila Batmanghelidjh, & their Christmas plate pledge campaign:
I hate tat, especially Christmas tat (Sorry-Not sorry). Essentially, it just clogs up landfill & it’s wasteful (don’t go getting me started on wastage). So please don’t buy me tat. For £2 spent on rubbish like this, I’d much rather 2 squids is donated to a worthy cause. For £2, you could feed a vulnerable child this Christmas. For a measly £2, you, yes YOU could be the difference to a child in need, here in the UK.
At the risk of sounding incredibly cheesy, ‘The children are our future’
I urge you to please donate & Share this post: Consider it your Christmas present to me.
PS: I know it’s not December just yet, but this is charity yo. Yo, ho, ho.