Friday, November 26, 2010

Black Friday and Why I am not Shopping

I am one of those selfish people not helping the economy today. I am the Scrooge who doesn't pile presents under the tree (but not the Grinch who steals them). I love the Christmas season, and that means you won't find me in line at any store at 4 a.m. on Black Friday. About fifteen years ago, in order to focus my voluntary simplicity energies on the holidays, I made a list of the most meaningful aspects of Christmas, the ones I wanted to experience MORE , and a second list of the things about the holidays that made me feel anxious or empty. Music and spirituality were at the top of the "More" list, and shopping for presents was clearly the activity I was more than ready to let go.

It was not an easy task. My children were still young enough (8 and 13) to want lots of presents under the tree. I actually did enjoy the mall experience: listening to the music, watching kids visiting Santa and savoring the buoyant atmosphere of holiday shopping. But choosing and buying presents made me anxious (Would they like this or that? Was I staying within my budget? Can this be mailed in time?) and every year when the presents were all opened, I felt empty and let down.

I won't relate all of my simplifying experiences at once, but share them over the next few weeks. For now, let me just say I am not shopping today. I am listening to Christmas music, knitting a hat for the mitten tree at church and pulling out my favorite mantle decorations.

1 comment:

"Mittsie" said...

Here here! It's funny, even though "Black Friday" is more of a thing in US, we still have sales in Canada - one place started it on Thursday and finished its sale TODAY. (Uhm, what happened to the "Friday" part?)

And yeah, I'm not going to wait in line at 4 am. I don't need the sales THAT badly, esp. in the cold weather. I can go online to get the sales. HA.