post

Princess Problems

Last night, we celebrated Christmas dinner at my step-mom’s house. It was a nice, intimate meal with just a few immediate family members.

One way I contribute to the meal each year is by making homemade gravy. My step-mom texted me to bring some flour over since she didn’t have any, yet somehow I missed the text. We agreed that a turkey with gravy was much better than a turkey without, but the chances of anything being open on Christmas day were slim to none.

I set out in the snow on my “flour adventure” hoping for the best.

I drove by three grocery stores and everything was closed. I tried calling some stores too. I had remembered a White Hen in the area, and went to find it, all to realize it had been torn down and replaced by new condos.

How did I miss that?!

Then I started texting people I knew who were cooking that day who might be able to assist with my flour needs. Nobody answered. They were busy enjoying appetizers and drinks with their loved ones rather than checking their phone.

This snow is getting heavy!

I remembered that my step-mom had suggested a quick mart close to her home, so I made my way there, and thankfully they were open. As I pulled up, the guy behind the counter was about to close the doors.

“It’s been so slow,” he said. “I want to get home to my family.”

I told him about my silly flour drama and we had a laugh. We chatted as I paid for my goods. I smiled as I thought of taking the turkey drippings and blending them into the flour, creating just the right texture for my gravy…

Mmmmm… gravy…

As I was getting ready to leave, I saw a very sad man walk into the quick mart. I watched as he went to the cooler — his face tired and lonely. As he went to pay for his drink, he grabbed a large bag of Dorito’s.

That was his dinner. Diet Pepsi and Dorito’s.

I’ve been alone on Christmas and I’ve been sad on Christmas. But even during those low moments, I’ve always been invited somewhere for a nice Christmas meal.

To think, I was worried about whether or not I would be able to make gravy to slather over our large turkey filled with stuffing while this man will be feasting on MSG and fizzy chemicals.

Your problems tonight are “Princess problems”, Jen.

I got into my car and wondered how many other people were having crappy Christmas dinners. Then I started to pray.

Please God, help that man feel the love of the Universe. Help all those people who are sad and hungry and malnourished on this blessed day. May they feel love and feel whole and feel full with your love. May they know they are loved by something bigger. Give them hope and help.

If you have air in your lungs, food on your table and love in your heart, you have all you need.

And if you’re blessed with more, pray for those with less.

Because that is the spirit of Christmas.

Comments

  1. Mike Conley says:

    The third from the last sentence says it all…thank you!

  2. Kirsten Grosskopf says:

    Well said!! Thank you for snapping me back to reality! Merry Christmas!

  3. Robert Schramm says:

    This is what I hate most about the religious community. Here is a woman finally realizing that her issues are small in comparison and runs head into someone in real need and instead of offering him some money for a real meal or inviting him back to her house to join in with her admittedly too much good stuff, she leaves him there in his misery and then makes herself feel better by saying a few words into the air. This is what is wrong with our country. People use religion as a way to wash their hands of actually doing any good. Shame on this person for thinking that by saying a few prayers and realizing how great her life is, that she did anything at all to help this individual. Yes, she had a mini-realization but now it is time for the monster realization. Praying for the unfortunate without stepping up and doing your part is meant only to lessen your guilt. It does nothing for the person in need.

    • Hey Robert- what is wrong with this country is people who judge without knowing all the facts- which is you. I wrote a book called “I’m Spiritual, Dammit” so I am hardly one the of the “religious community” that you so loathe. You have no idea how much time I spend with charities or “stepping up”, and to list them here would be like those people who only give to get the tax write off or the good publicity. Shame on you for jumping to the worst conclusion.

      The only way to fight pain is through love. If we give it by “talking to the sky” that is still giving it. So my guess is you need some love too. So therefore, you get prayed for now, even though I kind of want to flip you off because your comment was really mean. I’m spiritual, not “religious”. And spreading love over hate is what you might want to try one of these days.

      • robert was a bit more scathing than needed, but i admit to having a similar reaction. i have also seen lots of people call good intentions ‘good enough’ with an air of self-congratulation, and it totally lacks meaning or authenticity for me.

    • Patrick McCarthy says:

      I’m scratching my head, reading words that feel dead.

  4. Robert Schramm says:

    Rather than calling this post “Princess Problems,” I think it should be called “Princess Solutions.”

  5. Reading this made me wonder about the comments by the readers. There are so many other things involved here besides the man who is eating Doritos and Diet Pepsi. Maybe that meal “is” his treat? Maybe he prefers being alone? What your blog did was to enlighten us to the fact that there may be someone (and not necessarily, this man) who is lonely during Christmas. You made us aware that there is a problem simply by identifying it. It was the symbolism that you highlighted and shame on the others for focusing on one instance and not understanding the impact of the acknowledgment as well as the kindness of the intention. I totally get where you are coming from and it’s not “patting yourself on the back”, it’s noticing a need and making others aware as well.

Leave a Comment

*