I know the Christmas Letter is the butt of many, many jokes. But truth be told, I like getting these letters tucked into holiday cards, especially when they're from friends and family I don't talk to all that often.
The letters provide a little peak into their world, kind of like Facebook status updates do. Of course, the letter (and Facebook) generally just highlights, well, the highlights of the year. Rarely do you hear about the minor and major heartbreaks that hit us all day to day. And rarely does a Facebook status update--or a week of status updates--really capture the gritty part of a person's life.
I understand why this is--people are much more comfortable sharing happy news with a large number of people who they don't talk to in their every day lives. Sharing miseries and misfortunes is much more intimate, and therefore shared for those friends and loved ones who are in our day-to-day lives, not those who are in our virtual world or on our Christmas card lists.
But something gets lost, too, when we share only the sweet things in life. We don't allow ourselves to be truly known, and we also perpetuate the myth that bad things don't happen to everyone. Then when we ourselves are going through a hard time, we look at all the "happy" people around us and feel that much more alone.
So wouldn't it be fun if we shared an anti-Christmas letter, featuring only the low-lights of the year? Me thinks it would. I'll post mine in the next day or so. If you're so inclined, please do the same.