The PolidaysPosted: December 21, 2014
Holidays are complicated for a lot of people. It can be hard to find time to see everyone you need to see, without feeling like tearing your hair out. For poly people, things can be even trickier. The situation in my little circle is no different.
Originally, Papa Bear and I had talked about spending a lot of time together over the Christmas break. We were really looking forward to it, and had even talked about taking a night or a weekend away in the first week of January. Then The Wifey’s parents decided that were going to visit–during the whole week that Papa Bear has off. He could not be gone with me for days at a time, or even for most of an entire day. It is important to The Wifey that they be good hosts and spend time with her parents. Papa Bear is extremely disappointed. We really needed that time together, and of course, he wishes he could just spend his vacation as he would like to without having to hang out with his in-laws the entire time. I think most of us can agree that in-law visit? Not a vacation.
What makes matters worse, is that they come down on the 30th, which means that we also can’t spend New Years Eve together. We had talked about having an intimate hotel party, doing something else wild and crazy, or even just having a small gathering at one of our homes (I offered to host). Papa Bear said his in-laws wouldn’t care if he and The Wifey said they already had plans, but The Wifey really wants to spend New Years with her parents as a family.
I get it. I really do. You only get so much time with your parents, especially as they are ageing. It makes sense and its totally understandable. It’s just that I never get to do anything–ever. I have spent the past five New Years Eves stuck at home watching a movie and then watching my husband fall asleep by 10:30. The past couple of years I have been really depressed about it. There is NO WAY we can afford what baby-sitters charge for New Years Eve, so the Hubby and I can never go out, and the children’s grandparents aren’t interested in watching them for that particular evening. I can’t say I blame them–they did the child-rearing thing. It’s their turn to finally get to live a little again.
So there is no one to blame, obviously. No one is wrong. I’m just depressed that once again, I get to sit on my ass on New Years and feel super lame and extremely bored. And I don’t get to see my boyfriend, whom I love so much.
Papa Bear really wanted to spend New Years with me, and he knew how important it was to me, too. I get the feeling he fought for this one–even though it was not expressly stated–because he said in exchange, The Wifey has offered to let me have him all to myself for Valentine’s Day. I don’t know how big of a concession this was–if she was hoping to see one of her boys that day, or if they will be with their spouses and she will be alone, but I graciously accepted. (The Hubby and I don’t celebrate Valentine’s Day.)
Papa Bear said he was very proud of me, and he thanked me. “I know how huge this is for you,” he said. Sigh. He loves me so much. I get the feeling that if I had cried, or said I was devastated, or lost my shit, or even simply asked….he would have spent New Years with me. But I wouldn’t do that.
So while I am bummed, I am going to try my best to have fun at home. Again. If anyone has any ideas for a fun New Years Eve at home with kids sleeping down the hall, please feel free to make suggestions! Preferably ones that don’t involve getting blackout drunk and calling Papa Bear in a snit…
As far as actual Christmas Day goes, our family was invited to Papa Bear’s place for Christmas dinner. They were planning on having quite a few guests, though, and The Husband felt that it would be stressful (his social anxiety is just terrible), and that the kids would be exhausted by the time dinner rolled around. I tend to agree with him. He did say I was welcome to go over there after the kids are in bed, but I would not leave him alone on Christmas.
So instead, Papa Bear and his family are coming over on Christmas Eve for appetizers, drinks, dessert, and a kick-ass hot chocolate bar. This will also be my first time meeting his 20 year old son–no pressure! I am happy that we will be seeing each other on Christmas Eve, which is actually even more sacred to me than Christmas Day. It is cozier and has such a wonderful, intimate air of anticipation. I was hoping to see Papa Bear on Boxing Day, but the Wifey has it marked in the calendar as a “home day”, so I guess they will be just spending it at home with the kids. But I should tell Papa Bear to ring me if she ends up going out to see one of her boys. This frequently happens on days designated just for Papa Bear and her. Not bitter, though!
My sister is visiting on the 27th, and depending on what time she leaves, I may get to see Papa Bear that night after I tuck in the kids. We will also be together on the 29th, because his in-laws get here the next day, and then there is that crappy week where we barely get to see each other.
New Years Day we are spending some time together, though. He will tell Wifey’s parents he is out running errands. The Wifey reminded him that we shouldn’t be out too long, but at least I will get to see him. Our weekend away has been very tentatively rescheduled for Valentine’s Day.
I have a hard time managing my feelings, and The Wifey does too. We are all married, and we are all also in love with people who are not our spouses. Throw extended family members and sentimental days into the mix, and it gets even tougher. We are all doing our best, I think–trying to give where we are able to give, and also being brave about what it is that we want/need/can’t live without.
I have been penciled in for next New Years Eve, though. Assuming we make it through 2015, I will make absolutely certain not to bend on that.