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We managed Christmas, and we made it out the other end, but I’m drowning. I can’t find the floor. Everyone in this house has too much stuff, and I swear we just get more and more. I feel bad telling the kids they have to part with things, but we’re just drowning in too much stuff, and they’re not even grateful for half of it. Help!
The holidays certainly have a way of being the best and worst times of the year, don’t they? To see someone’s eyes light up as they open a gift that I put time, effort, or serious thought into always makes my holiday much more bright. Unfortunately, I have also been in your shoes, where I see a lack of gratefulness, or worse, an entitlement, from someone that makes me so deeply sad.
Children are wired to be concerned about themselves. Those infant years are truly about survival, of course, but as they get older they don’t always see that they have it easy. We want to give our children the best, and the ease with which we can accumulate more possessions these days can become quickly overwhelming. Something isn’t right? Don’t worry, just get a new one!
I won’t lie and say it will be easy, but this may be the time to buckle down and really assess your home, what’s in it, and the things you’re teaching your children. It is unquestionably possible to overcompensate for whatever you’ve felt like your shortcomings were and simply work too hard to not let your children want for anything… and sometimes even to overcompensate for the things you have felt you were missing and end up with too much for yourself.
Look at what you really use, what you really need, and what is just clutter taking up space. Take it one step at a time, and simply let some things go. You’ll feel lighter once you’ve done it dear, I promise.
My feelings are hurt. Maybe my heart is broken. I’m not sure. But I don’t really think there’s anything for anyone to apologize for or anything for anyone to do, either. How do you just “get over” something?
There are times in everyone’s lives where folks just get their feelings hurt. It doesn’t have to be a big fuss. You might not know someone is aching, they don’t have to cry. Maybe it doesn’t need to even make sense to anyone but yourself, after all, your feelings can be hurt no matter what. That’s the thing about feelings is, they’re yours.
Don’t be hard on yourself about it. It’s not easy to keep yourself from getting your feelings hurt by something. Family can be difficult. Friends can make mistakes, spouses can be hurtful, and children can just say the darndest things. And sometimes, all of those things can happen at once! The world can just be a tough place any time it wants.
Now, the tricky part… You can’t deny yourself your feelings. But you also can’t allow yourself to stay in a place of pain or hurt. Let it hurt. Let it ache. Then let it heal, and eventually, let it go. Sometimes there’s no way to “fix it”. Sometimes there’s not a second chance, or a way to go back and do it again. Sometimes there’s just the way things worked out, and what comes after. Maybe you learned a profound lesson. Maybe you just learned that you can be hurt. What matters is that you will eventually get there, eventually “get over” it, as you say. I don’t honestly believe that time heals all wounds, but I do believe time eventually dulls the pain. Hang in there, dear. It’s only just for now.