You read it right.
I. DO. NOT. CELEBRATE. CHRISTMAS
And it is really OK.
But I am not sure why in here in US, the country which upheld diversity like no other, that concept seems to be so bizarre.
I grew up knowing wholeheartedly that EVERYONE celebrates different festive days. It has become a common knowledge to me. From very young age, I got it. I understood then, I understand it even better now.
I know better not to say Merry Christmas to every single person, because I know NOT everybody celebrates Christmas and it is OK.
I got stares. I got awkward look.
Don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against Christmas.
You want to celebrate it as non-religious- pure gifting events, please do so.
You want to celebrate it as religious belief, I am happy that you do.
You want to spend your money on decorations, gifts etc, good for you!
Yes I know some people do not associate Christmas with any religion and I know personally many people who are non Christian celebrate Christmas for whatever reasons.
And that is TOTALLY fine for me. I got it. No big deal.
I don’t mind participating in so-called Christmas party. I think it is a great gathering to get to know your co-workers or your friends better.
I would come to your Christmas party if you invite me and bring presents.
I would gladly give you a big warm hug and wish you ‘Merry Christmas’ knowing for sure you celebrate Christmas.
My son participated in gift exchange in his schools all the time. He picked up cutest little gift for me, better than what his Dad would do.
But No. I do not personally celebrate Christmas.
And it is OK. It is not weird. It is not unusual. It is not wrong. It is OK.
Am I one of those religious people who are against Christmas?
No. Many of my views way are actually border line agnostic, to be honest.
And maybe in the future I would change my mind and celebrate Christmas, Hannukah, Chinese New Year etc.
So it’s not that I am reluctant to change or to adapt.
But I can’t help but feel pressure.
You know, that pressure you mostly experienced in high school?
Say when everybody has smartphone you ought to have one too ? otherwise you are not cool? your friends would laugh at you? will think you are weird?
(and this is exactly what my son was experiencing during the month of December)
I did a little social experiment.
During last Christmas season, I deliberately said ‘Happy Holidays to me!!’ and told someone bluntly “I don’t celebrate Christmas’,
Yet, they (ones who heard me) still asked “How’s your Christmas?”
“Are you ready for Christmas?”
I was not offended, but I was really baffled on how ignorance people can be.
Why is it so hard for most Americans to understand, accept, be respectful that some people really do not celebrate Christmas?
What bother me most is I feel like most Americans tend to generalize things too often and somehow most of us are ‘oblivious’ to our surroundings when it comes to Christmas time.
When someone is not doing what the majority is doing, then we somehow dislike them, we feel discomfort, we ‘ignore’ their differences, refuse to acknowledge the fact? and (unintentionally) keep shuffling our belief or tradition to them.
It is called diversity.
It is called freedom (of religion)
It is called choice.
I don’t celebrate Christmas (neither do many people on earth).
Let us be. It is OK.