My holiday gift: less stress

It just occurred to me that I have not done a single thing yet to prepare for the upcoming holidays. I haven’t purchased a single gift, prepared a single Christmas card, even written my customary holiday-season to-do list.
What can I say? I’ve been busy!
It also occurred to me that I have a choice: I can either stress out about the situation (which is the route I typically take) – or not.
I am going to try hard not to let stress overwhelm me this year. Experience has shown that somehow everything that needs doing gets done in the end. Or at least, most of what needs doing. Nobody’s holiday season is going to be enhanced by my fretting over my shopping list. And if I don’t get around to addressing Christmas cards until January, the world will not stop spinning.
In fact, I plan to make it my gift to my family and to myself to slow down and savor every moment of the season. If the bathrooms don’t get cleaned, the floors vacuumed, or the knick-knacks dusted, so what? As I’m sure is the case for many of you, stress tends to trigger my multiple sclerosis symptoms, making me feel fatigued, weak, and grumpy. Avoiding that will make the holidays much happier for me and everyone around me.
I also know from experience, though, that short-circuiting stress is easier said than done. I know I’m going to have to remind myself constantly to not let myself get carried away by the busy-ness of these coming weeks. I’m going to print this blog entry and tape it to the wall by my desk, where I can re-read it any time I start to lose my resolve.
For now, I’m going to make a cup of tea to sip while I browse through that stack of catalogs on the kitchen counter, looking for gift ideas – in a leisurely, stress-free fashion.
Happy, safe, and healthy holidays to all of you! 
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Jennifer LaRue Huget, Blogger

Jennifer LaRue Huget was diagnosed with MS in 2001. A freelance writer and children's book author, she lives in Connecticut with her husband, two teenage kids, and two brown dogs. Her website is