Like many people who celebrate this season in one way or another, one of my favorite parts of it is to spend time with people we care about and love. Since no invitations have come our way for holiday gatherings, we’ve decided to host our own, tonight.
We used to host parties all the time: cocktail parties, dinner parties, summer cook-outs, pool parties (when we had a pool), birthday parties (for ourselves and our friends) holiday parties, you name it. After a while, we got a little tired of always being the ones to host parties, and never be invited to any. They’re expensive, and a lot of work to prepare for and clean up after and, while it was always our choice to host such events, we began to feel the burden of being the only hosts, realizing it would nice to be a guest once in a while; so, a few years ago, we just stopped having parties, in the hopes that someone else might take up the reins at least once in a while.
No such luck.
Once we stopped hosting, we stopped seeing our friends on any kind of regular basis and, while there have been a few invites here and there, they are few and far between.
I don’t know if this social isolationism has made me more of an introvert, or if becoming more of an introvert has fed into my social isolationism, but the thought of hosting events now fills me with more anxiety than it ever did before. Oh, I always had some level of host anxiety as I strove to make everything perfect (is that a gay thing?) but over the years its grown worse. These are the things that have me stressed out today as I prepare for the party this evening:
Is my house clean enough? I’ve been cleaning for a week, but it always looks like I could/should have done a better job as a constantly notice dust, cobwebs, or dog hair that I missed in some nook or cranny.
Do I have enough food? I try to buy and/or prepare enough food without overdoing it, but I usually err on the side of overdoing it and then we’re stuck with all this food we shave to store and should NOT be eating for days or weeks after the party. (i.e. junk food)
Do I have a food everyone can or will eat? I try to have a variety of foods for every palate, and to be aware of/sensitive to dietary restrictions my friends may have, especially because of my own gluten allergy.
Do I have enough beverage choices, both alcoholic and nonalcoholic, so everyone will have something they can or will drink?
Are there enough places to sit? While I know parties are for mingling, I want my guest to be comfortable and worry because our house is small and seating is limited. There will be 20 people in my house tonight, and I only have seating for 14.
Should I re-arrange furniture so it is more conducive to seating, even if its awkward looking? I hate disrupting the decoration and arrangement of our house and furniture just to accommodate more people…I want everyone to see it as we intended it to look (and spent days decorating and arranging)
Will everyone get along and have a good time or did I inadvertently invite people who don’t like each other nor get along? Did I forget to invite someone I should have?
It doesn’t help that I’m sitting here, hooked up to my Remicade infusion tube, anxiously waiting for it to be done so I can get back home and get back to prepping and organizing for tonight.
These are the things that race through my head as I sit here and go over the guest list, the food and drink options, the house and seating configuration, and obsess over every little detail and decision. I’m sure, when the time comes, it will all fall into place and we’ll all have a great time. I just wish I was better at staying calm and not worrying about every little detail, like these guys are doing:
15 thoughts on “Ho-Ho-Host of Nerves”
Congratulations on hosting a holiday party tonight! And it’s the Winter Solstice, too, which seems like perfect timing to me.
My house is not in any condition to be hosting anything. Add to that my discomfort with groups of people and it’s unlikely that I’ll host much of anything.
I bet you’ll have lots of fun tonight. I’ll bet you’re really tired tomorrow. Wish I could be there.
You are not alone. My husband tends to get a bit anxious when we host and has the same concerns about food, seating, etc. I’m the opposite. I feel like folks are primarily coming for the social aspect so the food, drinks, seating are less important. “What’s the worst that can happen?” I ask myself. Even if we were to run out of food the positive side is there’s no left-overs! 🙂
I hope you ENJOY your friends and party tonight. 🙂
P.S. Have I ever told you how much I LOVE your fireplace? The stack stone is really beautiful. I also love your mer-men.
I’d be freaking out too. I used to host parties but that stopped a long time ago when people moved away. I absolutely love the mermen, and I hope they give you good luck with tonight’s event.
Oh, I got your card! I finally got a chance to open the mail last night after I put my new gaming chair together. Thank you!
if you lived closer, I would invite you to a party at my house!
I second mark; when I go to someone’s home, I am not there to inspect for dust/cobwebs/dead spiders, I am there for good food, good conversation, good friends. nothing else matters.
I have no doubt you had the best parties! I can understand why so many would go to your parties. However, it is unfair that only you host the Christmas parties. It would be nice to be a guest for once. I myself have never hosted a party. In fact when I moved in with Bill fifty-four years ago we both agreed we would never have a party. Never. We even joked that once we moved from our Pennsylvania farmhouse that that house would be a “virgin” house, having no parties. But once we moved that house would be “violated” with a party. Why don’t I have a party? Just for the reasons you stated, too much stress. Yes, I think it is a “gay thing” about being worried everything would be perfect thus preventing me from having a good time. As expected we’ve never been invited to a party, Christmas or otherwise. Oh wait, I’ll take that back. We were invited to a Christmas/Anniversary party last week. Two very nice guys were celebrating their 49th anniversary. We both like them but we didn’t go. I was planning to go but I let it slide. So what is my point? I don’t know! (smile). Much success on your party!
Sorry for the extra long comment.
No apologies needed. I appreciate your comments, Ron.
Wishing I could be a “mouse in the corner”. I am sure that everything is perfect (you think things out so completely). I am sure everyone will have a wonderful time–You and your Hubby will see to that. Just take care and try to relax and enjoy the time with friends. Have a cosmo, or two, or three. Wishing you success and the weekend to recover.
Hugs and Love
I just love those two photos in the last picture.
Thanks. Me too! The one on the left was taken by a friend the weekend we got Harvey. The one on the right is our one and only wedding photo.
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