How My Dog Taught Me to Get Over Christmas

After reflecting on everything that went wrong this Christmas, from the arguing to the disappointments to the insane credit card bills, I’ve realized that next year, I’m taking a cue or two from my dog, Bailey. Clearly, my beagle had a much better Christmas than me, and I think I could learn a lot from how she just takes it all in stride.

5 Reasons My Dog Had a Better Christmas Than Me:

5. My dog didn’t try spending her way into people’s hearts this year.

All she had to do was look cute. Perhaps if I wear a little scarf, I can pull that off, too. Maybe the stores will even let me take things home for free because I’m so cute. Maybe.

4. My dog was thrilled with the gifts she received.

Yes, she’d also be happy with a cardboard box, and she’d probably grab one and run for the hills at warp speed given half the chance. So, next year, I’m just going to grin and bear that plaid apron. Then I’m going to hide it in that cardboard box and give both the apron and the box to Bailey. Everyone wins!

3. My dog did not have to travel more than 15 minutes.

My dog lives with my sister, so she did not have to make the hour-and-a-half journey to my childhood home. Road rage does not help holiday stress. Were you driving down 95 on Christmas Eve night in a blue Taurus? Sorry about that, but, come on, you clearly had the pedals mixed up. You won’t make that mistake again.

2. My dog took a nap when she felt like it.

This was huge. I’d probably still be talking to certain family members right now if I had followed this rule. Oh, to be narcoleptic!

1. When things got tough, my dog took refuge under the dining room table.

When you start saying things to the in-laws that you’ll regret as soon as you get home or start throwing presents in disgust at unsuspecting family members (“Just open it, damn it!”), this is a great option. There are many positive things here:

1. Initially, no one will find you.
2. Others might drop food — so you’ll still eat.
3. A rogue, compassionate family member may try to coax you out with a treat. And that makes the whole day worthwhile, right? OK, not so much, but a treat’s a treat–and that’s everything to a dog.

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