1st christmas ever

by notalone 22 Replies latest jw friends

  • notalone

    So, I am around 50,4th gen born in- Christmas. Strange thing this Christmas thing. I've been watching people this year, really watching them. I was always told people don't really like Christmas. That it is stressful. That it makes people selfish. That suicide rates go up. Strange- that is not what I am seeing. My family joined a group that will be having a Christmas party. There will be some sort of gift exchange game. So today, for the first time in my life we went Christmas shopping. It was fun. We were thinking about the others and how to make them happy. We then went to pick out some cards. We thought of each person, of what they were going through in their lives. We thought of what would make them laugh. Then it hit FEAR!!! Not the fear I am doing something wrong, not the fear I could get in trouble, it was fear that if those who really love us and have continued to interact with us and yet still believe everything in the cult found out we had bought Christmas cards would be heart broken. I know how they feel.There is this idea that even if you don't agree with some things or you don't come to meetings that God can still reach you.There is this belief that if a person has any good in them and they understand the 'origins' of Christmas,they can not participate in it. If someone leaves and celebrates holidays or puts out political signs all is lost. There is no longer any good left in them. Armageddon is all that awaits them, and for those who loved them-endless pain. They have affronted God himself. So today, I had fear for the pain that others could feel. Then I got angry, what horrible cruel lies they ensnare sincere ones with. Then I asked- How? How did they convince so many to go along with this? My family knew nothing else, but how do they convince someone who experienced nice holidays to give them up? I came up with that they convince us that there are all these secret hidden traps ready to get us and that if we are special 'God" will show us these traps. We become paranoid- always expecting the traps. All we eventually need is for someone to say, " It's a trap." and we run in panic. We don't even stop to see if it really is a trap. We don't even stop to see f the person saying ' it;s a trap' is an honest or kind person. We are just jumping through the hoops trying to avoid these 'traps'. I guess all I needed to do was to stop, and see what is really happening. Guess what I found- Christmas is really beautiful, kind and full of laughter.

  • notalone

    By the way, when we got the cards. I had to hide them under everything. I kept finding myself looking around, making sure no one could see them- strange thing . Okay, maybe the gas passing penguin is in bad taste, but hiding them- oh well.

  • rebel8

    It may take a few years for that to wear off.

    Just do what makes you happy and step gradually out of your comfort zone until you have reached a destination called Normal.

  • millie210

    Very eloquent post notalone.

    Whether its Christmas or another avenue (you mentioned politics) that veers away from the narrow hallway of JW thinking, the mindset that it dooms a person is very pervasive. Very.

    All cultures, tribes and peoples have holidays and celebrations. It is inherent to human nature to do so.

    Even the Jews were told in Deuteronomy that at their festival they were to be "nothing but joyful".

    Where did that go? Modern day JWs are still locked in to the Puritan standards of their modern day founders.

    So sad really.

  • scratchme1010

    Well, congratulations on your first Christmas. Sorry you still have to hide things. Not to worry, though. Leaving is a process and things are not going to go perfectly or as wanted, especially if you're fourth generation born in (Oh, my!).

    Anyway, I agree that a nice Christmas celebration with loved ones and good friends is a lot if fun. However, the JWs do capitalize in the fact that there are in fact, people who are not fond of Christmas. I'm in NYC and during this time counselors, psychologists and support groups get very busy with people who have rather traumatic experiences with Christmas.

    However, that's not the majority of people. It really is what you make of it.

    I can't quite point at my first Christmas per se since I celebrated it a couple of times when I was still in. Again, not the perfect circumstances to share the joy with loved ones, but the part I was able to enjoy was great.

    Congratulations and Merry Christmas!

  • LongHairGal


    Enjoy your first Christmas! I realize it's all new to you since you are a born-in JW.

    Never-mind all the negative talk from those who say it's commercialized or people get depressed, etc. They miss their loved ones.

    But, you are just starting out. So, make your own wonderful memories and enjoy the childlike and simple pleasures, colors, lights, pleasurable scents!

    The Witness religion just wanted to separate JWs from non-Witness relatives and friends. I made sure I reconnected with all of mine! Priceless.

    Merry Christmas!

  • OnTheWayOut

    Happy holidays to you, to whatever degree you celebrate.

    Congrats on your first Christmas.

  • smiddy

    I go along with all the trappings that goes with Xmas, traditional dinner,alcohol, cards,along with family and friends and I consider myself an atheist now.

    Its a good time to enjoy each others company in celebration.And it gets easier with each passing year notalone.

    May we all enjoy this festive season .

  • Xanthippe

    I'm glad you enjoyed buying gifts and cards to bring happiness to others. Hope you have a lovely first Christmas.

    Yes they are very paranoid people. The sad thing is they think Satan and this world are out to get them when it's their fellow 'brothers' who are often out to get them, catch them out in something forbidden and tell the elders. Oppression breeds oppression.

    Festivals of light are part of many religions at this cold, dark time of year. I don't like the commercialism but I just try and ignore it. I buy small gifts I hope people will like and realise I care about them. I love holly and conifers, sparkling lights, food and wine.

    Have a good one!

  • Drifting Away
    Drifting Away

    notalone, I am in exactly the same boat. We cant put a tree up yet, because we have JW family coming over this weekend, Cant put decorations outside because of stalkers who are trying to figure out why we dont go to meetings anymore. I am not DF nor did I did dis-associate so trying to stay under radar for a few more weeks. But we bought gifts for family and friends that are not JW's. It is exciting I am also not young, just a little younger then you. So Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! as It is my first as well....

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