I don’t know if I want to comment on the so-called “war on Christmas” but I do want to chime in on my thoughts regarding a couple of aspects of the holiday that have been pressing on my mind lately.
The first thing I want to address is the greeting. The very act of greeting someone during the holiday season has become contentious, political and divisive depending on who you are greeting.
It would seem as the inclusive Happy Holidays, which includes Christmas, would be sufficient to those who celebrate said holiday over others. It appears as though that would be preferable to “Merry Christmas, Happy New Year and Happy Holidays” or whichever combination one attempts to convey.
I thought it would be fun to blend the two most controversial greetings, Happy Holidays and Merry Christmas with an equally inclusive yet also offensive Happy Christmas. I settled on this not out of spite for Christianity, after all I am a Christian. I selected the unconventional greeting simply because I am a trangender woman. By my very nature I am a non conformist thus it is my way to reject social norms while also adhering to my own beliefs.
The second aspect of the season I wanted to talk about is gift giving.
I have always been kind of emotional when it comes to gifts. Mainly not because nobody ever gets it right, they often do, but how often they get so close. I sometimes set my expectations too high. But the other side of it is my desire to give the perfect gift which often causes me anxiety when I myself fall short.
I will take this year as a perfect example.
While I have been struggling with, rather hiding internally my own transgenderism from my family my entire life, I have only recently begun going public with my decision.
This has made it difficult for me to maintain a healthy emotional balance. For every milestone I take towards my journey becoming the woman I have always desired to become, there are personal setbacks be it in my family life, personal life or career. The reality is my parents in particular, conservative as they are, have found it difficult to accept the life journey I have begun to embark upon. It thus came not only as a pleasant surprise, nay, a welcome thoughtful gesture rather, for my mother to send me a necklace with the letter S engraved on it. This was exceedingly meaningful to me as my deadname, the name my mother bestowed on me at birth, bore the letter R as a first initial. Thus to see her acknowledge my decision to alter my name to Stephanie, a name that better matches my new identity, was very special to me. The fact she chose to send me an S the first initial of my new name, is a symbol of her well meaning not to mention her never ending love she continues to offer me.
This particular year has been hard on most people around the globe. A part of me feels a twinge of guilt that I am having, for all reckoning, the best year of my life thus far. I have quickly learned to take the bad with the good but for me, all things considered I am having a fabulous year.
I went into this holiday season expecting I would be alone, shunned by the vast majority of my family. While that remains my reality for now, I am at the very least extremely touched by the fact at least my mother was kind enough to send me a gift that I can tell was sent with love along with a hint of heartache on her part.
I just hope someday she will see how meaningful it was for her to send this particular gift this year. I also hope she doesn’t expect this to raise the bar. I will die happy knowing that this year, 2020, was the Christmas my mom gave me the perfect gift, the gift of true love. They say it is the thought that counts. If that is the case I know without a doubt my mommy loves me. ~Stay Cool.