Christmas stress? ‘Tis the season

It’s quiet.

Or it will be once my wife leaves. I don’t mean that in a bad way. It’s not that I want my wife to leave, it’s just that as long as she’s here it’s pretty much the exact opposite of quiet.

Again, I don’t mean that in a bad way. My wife is just not one to suffer in silence and she tends to equate this time of year with suffering.

My wife treats this time of year as a stress-filled, pressure-packed, insane-driving, temper-tantrum-throwing, “Holy (bad word) I need more wine” four weeks.

While I, on the other wreath, treat this time of year as December.

Of course, as a veteran husband, I long ago learned not to say: “Hey, why are you so stressed? Don’t you know it’s Christmas?”

Here’s a piece of advice to you rookie husbands out there: Never ask your wife why she’s stressed out during Christmas.

Trust me.

Here’s another piece of advice for you rookie husbands: When your wife says “Oh, you don’t need to get me roses on Valentine’s Day,” what she means is “You (bad word), you better get me roses on Valentine’s Day.”

Again, trust me.

This actually just happened. I stepped away from my computer to help our 20-year-old daughter, Emma, print something, and when I came back my wife said she read the part of this column when I described how she views the holiday season.

My wife said what I wrote made her laugh. Then she told me she was in the middle of unloading Christmas-related gifts out of her car when she decided it would be easier to just wrap the presents in our driveway.

Several Christmas gift items sitting in our driveway waiting for my wife to warp them. In our driveway.
Actual presents from my actual wife’s car in our actual driveway which she will actually wrap. Actually.

That’s right. My wife is wrapping Christmas presents outside. In our driveway.

She also asked me how much wine we had on hand. I think the two things are related.

Oh well. ‘Tis the season.

I decided to work on my column sitting at our kitchen counter because I thought it would be the quietest place in the house. Emma is upstairs doing whatever it is college kids do when they’re home from school. In case you’re wondering, mainly what college kids do when they’re home from school is sleep or say “I wish I was back at school with my friends.”

My wife was supposed to be out shopping for last-minute gifts because apparently I “have no idea what it takes to make Christmas happen” because apparently I “am a clueless, hopeless moron,” but at the last minute decided to unload some of the other last-minute gifts from her car and wrap them in our driveway. However, during the course of her driveway, gift wrap-a-thon, my wife feels the need to constantly come inside to remind how much she has to do to get ready for Christmas while I’m “just sitting there making fun of (her) in the paper.”

Have you ever tried to make fun of your wife in the paper while she is constantly interrupting you to point out how hard she is working to get ready for Christmas while you’re just sitting there making fun of her in the paper?

You should. It’s a hoot.

I like the quiet of Christmas. When Emma was much younger, these few days before Christmas were far from quiet.

When Emma was younger, she spent the few days before Christmas asking me how many days were left until Christmas. Then, a few minutes after I would tell her how many days were left until Christmas, Emma would ask me again … and again … and again.

Now, Emma just tells me she wishes she was back at school with her friends.

Again … and again … and again.

Oh well. ‘Tis the season.