If I were allotted only one adjective to describe the Christmas holidays, I think I would settle with “complicated”. I was going to say “fattening”, but lets be real, life is fattening, and there’s no time of the year more complicated than the festive season.

It’s the same sh*t every year.

Overnight, we are expected to switch from a diet of Halloween brack and bland monkey nuts, to tins of Roses and diabetes. Suddenly, the scary hats are pulled from our heads/the shelves, and it’s time to replace the black bag you went trick or treating in with a slinky sequined dress – even though all the signs are screaming at you to eat MORE, it’s Christmas. 

Now, I’m very busy leading the life of a struggling writer – but, if I did have time, I’m fairly sure I could find a psychological study that suggests a sudden switch like such is bad for us.

Then, quicker than your Mammy can say “I must order a turkey from Darcys”, it’s time for your dreaded work Christmas party.

Just when you thought things couldn’t get any more complicated, you’re sucking yourself into that tight Christmas frock, and Sebastian in the office is telling you that you’re “actually attractive – for a ginger”.

Let’s be real. There’s only one way to make this event bearable – the same way we make all depressing events bearable (like funerals, and weddings) – with alcohol.

But that too, is complicated. You find yourself swaying to a voice deep within. The voice is chanting “seven glasses of wine is too much” – and in the same breath – “F**k it, it’s FREE!”. 

Before you know it, you’ve lost one shoe and the voice is telling you that you’re an AMAZING DANCER.

Oh wait, that’s Sebastian.

The next day, you wake up with the special kind of hangover only a good Christmas session can bring, and find yourself inviting your psyche to take stock of what, or who, might be missing from your life.

First on the missing list is your shoe. This is followed closely by money, and a significant other. Because not only is Christmas the most complicated time, it is also the most expensive, and lonely.

Of course, finance is the more practical one to focus on here. Despite being a struggling writer who is signed up to every dating app possible, I’ve found money easier to acquire than a lover.

Plus, you can lock money in your wardrobe for days and not feed it, and nobody will say anything to you.

And if you still find yourself focusing on how lonely you are, money can help.

That’s right, money can get you plenty of bits and bobs to distract you from your loneliness. No time to pine for love and meaning, when you’ve just bought a new parrot that eats a very specific diet of bounty bars and only speaks German.

Then, there’s family. The only thing more complicated than family, is family at Christmas.

You know how it goes. The drunk aunt, the lingering uncle, the war of malteasers between siblings.

Ah, siblings at Christmas! When I was a little girl, I used to request a dream sibling from Santa. Not much has changed there, I still have pretty much the same idea of what this ideal sibling would be like.

Basically, it would be robust enough to beat up bullies/win a game of tug-o-war, but still cute enough for strangers to want to “eat us up” and give us money.

Ideal sibling would balance out all of the qualities that I lack. Like the way I’m too funny, and sometimes too nice. Which are basically my only flaws. I’m a sweet, funny kinda girl.

But ideal sibling would be tough and straight talking.

“No Sebastian, YOU’RE attractive for a ginger” They’d say (or something equally cutting).

Now, somebody just tweeted me to say that they found my shoes hanging up with the Christmas decorations in the hotel, so I must go. I will leave you with a round up of my three best tips for surviving a complicated Christmas.

  1. Alcohol
  2. A German Parot
  3. An imaginary sibling