I Hate Manufactured Holidays, But Still…

…I purchased this box of chocolates for my mother for Mother’s Day, which is Sunday.

Box of Chocolates

More importantly, she and I will spend time together, over breakfast, which she will most certainly not cook. This commitment of time–which cannot be purchased, only given–helps me moderate my distaste for rampant consumerism fueled by monthly manufactured holidays (Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Administrative Assistant’s Day, or whatever).

We have breakfast, when we’re in the same city, on a regular basis. A week doesn’t pass that we don’t email and speak on the phone. Our conversations frequently end with the words, “I love you.”

Still…still…I bought the box of chocolates from my friend Christian at L’Artisan du Chocolate as well as a snarky Mother’s Day card which should elicit a chuckle from the one who brought me into this world.

Does anyone else share my anxiety at the dilemma: the importance of expressing our love for someone vs. the knowledge that we are, at some level, just perpetuating a consumer racket?

I’d love to hear your thoughts.



2 thoughts on “I Hate Manufactured Holidays, But Still…

  1. I agree completely. I’m planning to visit my mother this Sunday, bring her a card and a potted flower my wife assembled and have her Grand Children entertain her all afternoon. The consumerism is really excessive, and I notice as I get older I have no desire to get (or give) more stuff. Still, one must keep up, to a certain degree, with societal expectations, I suppose. How we choose to do that is the interesting challenge.

    Last Christmas my eldest boy asked me what I wanted for Christmas. He’s newly married and rightly keeping his spending in check. I said I wanted him to attend Mass with me Christmas morning. He did, it didn’t cost him a penny (other than what he put in the offering) and I didn’t end up with some gadget I didn’t want, need or have a place for storing. My five year old daughter gave me my favorite gift: a series of drawings, including one titled “Squirrel in a Jar” (don’t know where that came from).

    As for all the other secular holidays, I try to ignore them as much as possible.

    1. You set a great example when you asked your son to spend time with you rather than buy you something. Congratulations. And thanks for the insightful post!

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