Do you do Norman Rockwell?

Discussion in 'Et Cetera, Et Cetera' started by naughty, Nov 20, 2007.

  1. naughty

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    Workin' up a good pot of mad!
    LOL! I was just talking to one of our members about why so many of us get depressed at holiday time. We figured that many folks feel that if they dont have the Norman Rockwell version of THanksgiving or Christmas then they have some how been short changed. Here is a poem I wrote about just that very thing...

    Insanity is a relative thing


    They say for every family fight turned deadly
    At the Thanksgiving table there was
    A whole menu of dysfunction
    That no one knew about.
    Aren’t we merciless
    Diagnosing quirks that have taken
    A lifetime to cultivate?
    We all have a Great Uncle Mojo
    Inconvenient at times when we want
    To pretend our name is Cleaver (without Eldridge)
    And we live on TV.
    But who knows what lurks behind those pledge scented doors
    ‘Cause we all know by now that insanity is a relative thing.
     
  2. 36DD

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    I don't "do" Norman Rockwell, or anyone lately! lol...sorry, couldn't help myself.
    I just don't do holidays anymore...it is too hard on me and my family with the recent deaths in the past couple of years. I try to pretend holidays don't exist right now and treat it as any other day...do the laundry, clean...whatever I can to keep from spending the day in tears.
     
  3. goodwood

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    Naughty, darling...
    Excellent post and poem. Thanks! I think your thoughts are more widely shared than you might imagine.
    I suppose that many people may feel that if they are not having the Norman Rockwell deal going that they may feel less than.
    Having been in the Norman Rockwell scene, it was lovely as a child but as I became older and aware of all of the dynamics invloved I wanted to get the hell out and away from it and as a result craved alone time at holidays i.e. Hugh Grant in About a Boy.
    I still dread having to make family holiday appearances which are Norman Rockwell-esque to the outside world. From the inside, they are (for me) very stressful events which consist of all involved being false and obligatorily polite. Which usually works as long as everyone is properly medicated (self or prescribed or a combination thereof).
    It is important to surround yourself with people who you care about, care about you, forget about being selfish, enjoy who you and they are.
     
  4. jason_els

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    My family actually gets along. I'm less and less impressed with Thanksgiving; particularly as it comes so close to Christmas. It should have been placed in late April or May or something.

    This year is going to suck. No question about it. I have no desire to see anyone really. Not until I lose some more weight and have my head screwed back on the right way.
     
  5. goodwood

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    36 -
    I am sorry the holidays are a difficult time for you. If cleaning and doing laundry is cathartic for you then that is what you need to do to heal perhaps.
    Is there anything that you enjoy doing, that is fun for you and just you that you could be selfish and indulge in just to get out or do something? Or if not get out, then take a nap even? Whatever it is, I hope you do it. : )
     
  6. naughty

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    Workin&#039; up a good pot of mad!

    Goodwood,

    You are just the type of new poster I was refering to in the Style vs Substance thread. I look forward to more of your intelligent and positive posts. :smile:
     
  7. JustAsking

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    Naughty,
    Your advice is valuable. We gave up the Norman Rockwell thing years ago. For anti-NR therapy, we watch A Christmas Story, and Chevy Chase's Christmas Vacation. These two movies put you in the right frame of mind so you don't take the perfection part too seriously.

    We figured a long time ago that the more family members, dogs, and cats we can have at our house in the midst of sheer chaos, the better the holidays are.

    Its important to have as many generations in the house, and people sleeping with less than perfect accomodations. Dogs, some of which are together for the first time, must chase each other and chase the cats. Even better is if you have to keep one dog separated from another one so that the logistics are difficult.

    Its also important to cook the Thanksgiving turkey a different way each year. An radical and untried recipe is the best. It adds the right kind of edge to that holiday, wondering if it will be any good. Warning: don't try the recipe that uses car battery acid. That one is crossed off our list.

    All this is the formula for a very sweet and memorable holidays.
     
  8. 36DD

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    I just haven't reached that point yet...my sister has...her baby daughter died 2 months after my daughter. It has been extremely hard. Hard on everyone...our other children, our parents...My sister has decided to go up in the mountains and throw snowballs with her son. I am just not there yet.
     
  9. 36DD

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    That sounds good...maybe next year I can start new traditions that are totally atypical of traditional holidays. We used to all spend the day in our pj's so we could eat all we wanted and be comfortable or we'd go to the homeless shelter and help serve food. Those things have too much pain associated with them now.
     
  10. goodwood

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    Naughty -
    You are too kind. I hope to be stylishly substantive. One can be optimistic. LOL.
    Justasking - Sounds like a perfectly chaotic holiday with something to keep everyone engaged and allowed to feel useful and contributive.
    36 - when things are so difficult for you to come to terms with, perhaps the best way for you to be able to do that is to spend the time you need to - to grieve in your own, private manner. I know what it is like to loose a child and it took a long time. I am thankful for the friends who let me grieve out loud to them and have them listen to me. Sometimes they listened without saying a word and sometimes they proffered some wonderful advice which I would never have thought of. I consider myself fortunate that I had such friends that I could express myself to. It helped tremendously. I believe you have many friends here and if we may be of help, simply ask. Sometimes we don't have because we don't ask and when we ask, we may be surprised (pleasantly) at how supportive people can be. And if they are not supportive when you need then to be, perhaps they are feeling worse than you and you might be able to be of help to them. ?
     
  11. 36DD

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    It's painful for everyone and I don't want to burden anyone...my sister and I talk. Friends? What friends? They deserted me years ago when they judged me for wanting out of a dead marriage. My new friends I just don't open up with as I don't ever want to be hurt by so called "friends" ever again...
     
  12. headbang8

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    Norman Rockwell? My family is more like Norman Bates.
     
  13. 36DD

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    :rofl: Thanks, I really needed to laugh!
     
  14. goodwood

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    36 -
    You might find that you have friends in the most unlikely places. Sharing ones sorrow is not a burden to those who care to listen. And those who care to listen possess compasion and might have been through what you have been. Perhaps they have been through what you have been through and are thinking the same thing, like "I can't talk about this/no one will listen/care/I'm a burden"
    In talking about what you are dealing with you may release others to be able to talk about things they thought they could never speak of. Think of them? Think of what you would like to say and think of the compassion and insight you might be able to offer other people who are dying to have someone listen to them and understand? Just a thought....
     
  15. 36DD

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    It's not that the thought has escaped me, Goodwood. I know the benefits of opening up when it is on my terms...It took me years to tell others that I was raped, and when I did it was in a public speaking engagement. It was so powerful to feel free of my shameful secret and many women came to me later sharing their experiences. The people in the audience were crying and very visibly moved...as was I, it was a very emotional evening for me...but what a weight off my shoulders!
    As far as my grief...I won't talk about it with friends...as I said, they deserted me...and people can be very stupid and cruel without meaning to sometimes. Someone actually told my sister she should be over it by now. I'm sorry...is there a time line on grief? Don't think so, and I am not about to share something so personal with small-minded people who judge you for your emotions when they haven't a clue how it feels. My family is my support, my cats are my support (they know when I'm in need of love), and some of the people here have been very kind to me but I do not want to burden those who have shown compassion to me, and I most certainly do not ever want to be betrayed by "friends" like I was before.
     
  16. Principessa

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  17. naughty

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    Workin&#039; up a good pot of mad!
    I think many of us have that family thang going on. I used to dread when everyone would get together at my grandparents. Total jockeying for attention and position. Attempting to out do each other and the presents! Oh that would take an entire thread...
     
  18. camper joe

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    Why is it we feel the need to gather together, 2 or 3 times a year, with people that any other time of the year we try to avoid?????
     
  19. camper joe

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  20. lafever

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    The 50`s image of the housewife slaving in the kitchen doesn`t get it in my household, shani and i cook together and sometimes debate on just going out for sushi or a good steak. Last christmass we went to a chinese resturant and decided to make it an annual deal, so i`m looking forward to many years of our new tradition of letting someone else serve us. As far as thanksgiving goes this year, basically the same traditional crap as always, as usual i get more satisfaction out of the desserts than i do the main course.

    lafever:cool:
     
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