Christmas & New Year’s

I’m not un-used to waking up alone on Christmas morning. In fact, I’ve been doing it for over a decade now. The only difference is that I had something to look forward to later in the day with friends (or for a couple years, family). This year, I was fortunate enough to go hang out with my co-worker and her family and for that I am extremely grateful. It was fun getting to know her and her partner, meeting her best friend and the rest of the family. They were all so welcoming and made me feel right at home.

Being alone during the holidays never gets easier. The holidays were always a time of extreme happiness for me growing up. Most of our “problems” were put on back-burners, dad (usually) wouldn’t get drunk those few days, and my parents would get along. There would be movies with my cousins, and lots laughing with my grandparents telling stories of my mom and dad (we generally tried to see both sides of the family on Christmas). Both sides of the family are large, so there would be a ton of food, and plenty of chaos. Even now, 15 years after moving away, I miss it.

When I left home, I figured it was just a matter of years until I had my own family to start making memories with, or at least a significant other who would be accompanying me back for those crazy family holidays (or we would be going to his family’s holiday tradition). but that hasn’t quite happened yet, and while I get stronger each year in who I am, I also feel a little bit weaker each year being alone. And the holidays just bring that out more.

I miss my friends who I have spent the past 7 Christmas’s with. I miss the other orphans who became my family. I miss the friends who let me be a part of their family Christmas’s for so many years.

This holiday season has definitely been hard, for a lot of reasons and while I’m not much of a material person, it’s always sad waking up to a lit tree with no presents and no people to open them with.

I guess I’m just not feeling too “happy holidays” today….more like, “bah hum-bug”.

What I will say is that I’m thankful for Ginger. I’m thankful for her little, warm, snuggly body that fit itself against me throughout the night and made me feel not alone. She’s a great companion.

It’s New Year’s Eve now and I’ve watched the sun set for the final time in 2017. I spent last night with new friends and a lot of laughter and on one hand, I’m happy to be at home tonight, chill and calm. No social expectations, no looking around anxiously as the clock moves towards midnight wondering if someone will kiss me when the clock strikes. My last few NYE’s, I’ve either spent at home or at my favorite pub with my best friend, but either way, they’ve been more on the low-key scale which is what I like.

I went to the grocery store earlier to pick up dinner items, bubbles and a couple household items so I wouldn’t have to worry about going out again until work on Tuesday. I was doing fine until I pulled a higher-priced bottle of champagne off the shelf in a “treat yo self” moment and the guy working in the department asked if I had questions. I, all of a sudden, had a flood of emotions hit me as I told him no, that I would just be drinking the bottle alone and as long as it was a decent bottle, I would be happy. As tears welled up in my eyes and I blinked rapidly to keep them from falling, I thanked him for his help and went on my way wondering what had gotten into me. I had been doing so well today.

I’m back in my apartment now, cozy in my fleece robe and wine slippers with a glass of prosecco to kick off the evening. The melancholy feeling has followed me into my cozy space though and I’ve decided to just invite him to stay through the night and hope that he’ll be gone in the morning.

As we move out of the holiday season, I’m sure things will balance back out and my outlook will brighten. My routine will return and life will become normal again, without past memories haunting my days. The downside is that I have no long-weekends to look forward to for awhile.

Man, this has turned into one long, sad post. I am definitely ready for some happiness. I’m ready for some sparkle in my world. Please, please, please let 2018 be a great year!

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