Return of the Spawn of the Revenge of Bah Humbug!
I know, I know, for the last three years I've been through various permutations of this one. And this year I was really, truly going to give it a rest. And I may yet, in real life. The Mermaid Girl is old enough that I'm not so worried about her fragile little identity (hah! like her identity could ever have been called fragile in any way, even when she was an infant! But you know what I mean), and me being upset about it seems to distress her way more than whatever Christmas-related outreach prompts the upset in the first place, and her teacher's so low-key that I wasn't too worked up about a big Santastravaganza in the classroom this year.
Actually, I brought up the whole December Dilemma at the parent meeting at the beginning of the year, and the teacher was like, Meh, I don't do too much fuss about any of the holidays, they get enough of that crap everywhere else and we have a lot of work to do. So, hey, fine, works for me!
And as for the Christmas Music Everywhere Already and things like the Holiday Party at Work Being Called Just a Christmas Party, No Bones About It-- meh. Again, hard to get worked up. I had really decided to just go with the flow this time around, not get all pissed off, it drives MG and the Renaissance Woman nuts when I do, anyway.
My only dilemma as of this morning--I was going to post about it, actually--was whether it's worth it to put together some kind of song and dance about Chanukah for MG's class. As she and her classmates get older-- she's in a Grade 3/Grade 4 split this year--it feels less relevant, and harder to put together something interesting and age-appropriate. I asked MG what she thought, and she said, kind of wearily, "Well, you can if you want to." So, I don't know.
But! Then MG had to go and get herself accepted into the Special Choir at the very last cutoff before it was too late (apparently she was absent during the first announcement of the choir, back in October or so, so she never signed up till now). Oh boy! The Special Choir is going to do Special Songs at the Christmas (I know, I know) Show! And they're going to sing at the mall! And she really, really wanted to do it! And so RW wrote a note begging the music and dance teacher to let her in late, and the teacher did, and now MG is part of the choir, and her first rehearsal was today, and she brought home the song sheets so she can practice lots and make up for starting late.
So, hey! Fine! Jingle Bells, whatever! Deck the Halls! You're a Mean One, Mr, Grinch, swell!
But...and probably you saw this coming...what's with "Silent Night"? With the second verse, and everything, about how Christ Our Savior is Born? And "Away in a Manger"?!?
I know MG will HATE it if I make a fuss, or even if I talk about it with her. She hates to be different, she would hate to not sing the songs. And it doesn't seem like the height of tact or consideration to ask special permission for our kid to join the choir late and then turn around and object to the set list the next day. And I get that this choir is an optional activity, not a required part of the school curriculum But I hate, hate, hate that they're singing unabashedly religious hymns as part of a school program.
Also, it's stupid. MG might be the only Jewish kid at the school, but she's far from the only non-Christian.
I'm even ambivalent about blogging this. In the past, when I've complained to friends and even some family about Christmas celebrations at MG's school, I've encountered blank looks of incomprehension and also well-meaning but often patronizing explanations on why I really shouldn't be upset about it, from surprising quarters.
I mean, I guess people really, really, really love their Christmas, and it Upsets them when someone questions any aspect of it. Okay. Fine. What the fuck ever.
It just makes me tired. I don't even want to talk about it with anyone, and I really don't want to argue about it with anyone or pull it together to explain myself.
So I am going to let her sing the fricking songs, and I am not going to make a big deal out of it, and I am not going to complain to the music teacher or the principal or even to RW. I've complained here, and that's it. I'm done. The end.
On the bright side: