The Post Holiday Blues

Every year after the holidays I experience the blues.  I call it my post holiday funk.  And I feel guilty about it.

Guilty because I have so many blessings in my life and so much for which to be thankful.  When I get into one of these moods (and I do every year after the holidays), DSH and I talk about the fact that I may have Seasonal Affective Disorder – all those cold, gray days making one moody.  Or an alternative theory is that I am depressed about my January birthday.

Sister Sandwich on Christmas morning.  I love that the kids all get along.

And every year, when I get this way, DSH says to me that maybe I need to seek some help.  Professional help.

So, after a few days of being extremely crabby, I decided to Google it.  Yes, Google is the answer to all of life’s questions.  The interesting thing is that as soon as I typed in post holiday the list popped up post holiday depression and post holiday blues.  Since I don’t really consider myself to be depressed, I clicked on post holiday blues.  Guess what?  There were over 5 million (yes, million) hits on post holiday blues.

Now I don’t feel so bad.  I’m not the only one who feels this way after the holidays.

One article I read listed many reasons why this happens.  Some reasons like the stress of spending time with family members with whom you may have unresolved issues or spending too much money are obvious, but not really relevant to me.

But a few reasons that were mentioned did strike a nerve.  Obviously, schedules are disrupted during the holidays.  That is so true for us with three college students on what I “lovingly” refer to as vampire schedules putting our sleep at a premium.  There is a biological basis for how this impacts our moods, and it just takes time and getting back into a routine to get back on track.

Check.  We are working on that.

But the one item on the list that really hit home for me was referred to as “decision fatigue.”  When one spends a great deal of time making all of the decisions surrounding holiday activities – gift giving, entertaining, decorating, cleaning house, etc., the result can be decision fatigue.  Yes, I handle all of the holiday planning in our home.  Okay, to clarify I manage most of the household decisions not just the ones related to the holidays.

That’s it!  I have decision fatigue!

Imagine being able to enjoy the holidays without having to worry about the decorations, food, gifts, schedules . . .

This is how I know I have decision fatigue.  DSH tells me that we have been invited out to dinner by a former business associate and her husband.  This couple is from China so they asked him if he could pick a restaurant.  So he asks me to pick a restaurant.  See how that works?

I do a little research and find a Chinese restaurant, owned by a Chinese woman, with good reviews and that is my suggestion to him.

DSH runs it by his business associate and firms up the plans.  Then he looks at the menu.  And starts to make snide comments about some of the unique items on it.  He makes the very bad mistake of teasing me about the choice of this restaurant.

If you do not want to make a decision about something, then you should not pick on the person who you asked to make the decision.  Unless, of course, you wish for that person to become upset when you criticize the choice.  Very upset.

Letting things roll off my back – nope, I’m not so good at that.  Guess I gotta work on that.  Maybe I’ll add it to my list of New Year’s resolutions.  Next year.

The solution for decision fatigue is to allow yourself some time for pampering.  Time where you have to make no decisions.  Maybe DSH can make some decisions about how I can have some of this downtime.  My birthday is coming up after all.

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