As a kid I hated Christmas with a passion. I think it was because there was someone who scared me who I could avoid or wouldn't see at other times of the year, but Christmas Day was not good, and to be endured. I guess there are many people for whom that is true, or who hate Christmas for some other reason. The joy and happiness of others only made Christmas even worse for me. (Bah-humbug).
As a teenager I discovered New Year's Eve, and I always partied hard and enjoyed myself at New Year, which made up for Christmas. Becoming a Christian didn't change Christmas for me, but having my first-born son at Christmas was pretty special. However, what has finally redeemed Christmas is being a priest and doing umpteen Carol services, Christingles, Midnight masses and Christmas Eucharists. Digging deep each year to find a message of hope and peace at Christmastime has made it the most amazing season of all, filled with wonder and hope and shear amazement at almighty God coming to our scruffy earth. I could wax lyrical about the Incarnation for ages. When I come back from Midnight Mass I am on the ceiling with the excitement of this most astonishing miracle, it keeps me buzzing for hours (when I should really be sleeping!)
I still have a bump I need to get over, though, each year at this time. A knot of resentment and a remnant of anger and nausea as I see the Christmas lights go up. So, to cheer myself up I play the one Christmas pop song that I love - Fairytale in New York by the Pogues. I hope you like it too... and the moral of the story is, I guess, that Christmas is amazing, but sometimes it takes some unwrapping to find the present.