"I know I should be feeling stressed, resentful and blue," says Cracker, 57, of West Allis, Wis. "The season should represent a type of Hallmark perfection that my family can't achieve. It should remind me of all the disappointments of past Christmases.
"And yet I just can't muster that feeling. I really like shopping, hosting parties, giving presents and seeing neighborhood decorations."
Cracker spent years in therapy adjusting to her outlier status. At her counselor's suggestion, she has organized a self-help group, Holiday Lovers Anonymous, for others who feel bright and cheerful during the winter holiday season. It meets each Tuesday evening at Goldmann's Department Store. Members take turns sharing their tales of holiday glee, then shop the store for Christmas gifts and stocking stuffers.
Cracker invites prospective members to attend the next meeting at 7 p.m., Tuesday, Dec. 13. She notes, "No matter how happy you feel during the holidays, we want you to know you're not alone."