Merry Christmas everybody! I hope you spend baby Jesus’ birthday filled with love and joy. Mine, initially, wasn’t very loving or joyful I must admit, but things turned around for the better at the end. That’s what matters, right?
It was such an odd buildup to Christmas for me too. The weekend seemed to be just an odd blur. I know I got stuff done on Saturday and watched Christmas movies then too, but it feels to me like I must have been in a coma or something because the days flew by so quickly. Since I was out of touch with my football watching, I spent all Sunday watching the various NFL games too, so my Sunday flew by as well. Before I knew it, Christmas Eve was here, and I was awake and getting ready to drive the 30 minutes to my grandparents’ house. It was a quick visit, however, because everybody in my small family had places to go aside from my grandparents’ house, me included. It was cool to catch up with my cousins and see my family together again, but I felt a little guilty for having to leave my grandparents in order to sleep to go to caroling at 11pm and High Mass at midnight, but I departed anyway. I was still the last one to leave, so there’s that.
That’s about the point where things started to go south for me. As soon as I got home, of course I was wide the hell awake. I could not fall asleep for the life of me. To make matters worse, I think my neighbor upstairs had kids or something visiting him because all I heard was the pounding of feet and God knows what else hitting the floor making percussive thuds down onto me. Normally I tune those things out, but this time my brain was still working in overdrive so I couldn’t fall asleep. I think I only slept about 45 minutes before I got up and got ready to go to my parish. As soon as I got into the church and sat at my normal pew I started to feel ok until the choir started singing. Apparently, I was so relaxed that I started to feel myself slowly wanting to go to sleep. I fought it all the way through until Mass started and thankfully I was very much awake for the entire Mass. I didn’t think I’d make it, to be honest. So, after Mass concluded and I walked down the aisle to exit the church, a bit of sadness came over me. And this is going to sound stupid and narcissistic and for that I apologize, but I started to feel sorry for myself. Actually, I started to feel this before Mass even started, but of course as Mass takes place I tend to focus on that. Anyway, the reason I started to feel sorry for myself is because a wave of loneliness took over. Normally, I prefer to be alone, but there are certain days and activities where the bad light of being alone hits and this happened to be one of them. I started to feel pretty worthless, actually. How sad is it that there were a lot of families there celebrating the birth of our Lord ready to celebrate even more as soon as Mass ended in whatever way they were going to choose to, and there I was attending Mass alone, going home alone, to an empty house. The emptiness of it is the part that bothered me, actually. I’m used to being alone and as I just mentioned, prefer it most of the time, but that 10 minute drive back home was the saddest I’ve had in a while. There are a few questions that go through my head sometimes like “Why is it that my life is this way?” “What the hell did I do to deserve this?” They were sure dancing through my head then. Where did I go wrong? If you want me to be honest, I don’t think they’ve ever been right in my adult life. How sad is that?
I don’t want to be misunderstood, though. I’m not seeking sympathy or anything; I’m just merely stating the facts of my life as it’s stood for 20 years. I always have the worst luck in trivial things, but trivial things that make the most emotional impact. I think I’m the only idiot alive who wants to have a family life that currently doesn’t. I know there are probably a lot of men in family situations that would kill to have my life too, so I guess it works both ways. There have been a lot of blessings in my life likewise that people would die to have blessed onto them. It doesn’t change the emotional feelings when you’re right in the middle of them, though.
Anyway, I got home about 1:45am and decided to watch The Polar Express since I wasn’t going to go to my dad’s house (as I found out we weren’t getting together at all on Christmas day, which was a first for me) for Christmas and I doubted that my nephews would want to see it as they’ve never been interested in it, so even though I was going to see them later on in the day I knew I’d only have this opportunity to watch it. I made a cup of hot chocolate and tried to cheer myself up. It only masked the hurt because I still felt lonely and just empty, and of course the exhaustion I had still was lingering so that made things worse. Well, I only lasted about an hour until I was in and out of sleep before I decided to shut the movie off and go to bed. A heavy sleep brought the morning quickly and for as much as I was hoping that my Christmas blues would kick rocks, of course they didn’t. I opened my cards like they were pieces of mail because nothing about it felt special. I appreciated the gifts and the cards, but it just felt… what’s the word? Ordinary. There was no Christmas spirit there at all. I went back to bed since I felt like I had a hangover even though I didn’t drink and when I woke up again still feeling bad, I had no choice but to get up to go deliver the Christmas gift I gave my dad as he was at work, then I drove back home to wait for my sister to show up. By this point, it was 1 or so in the afternoon, my head was pounding, I was starving, and I felt pretty bad emotionally to boot.
When my sister finally showed up about an hour later, things really turned around for me. Seeing my nephews made all the difference. I was glad to have them over and I was glad to watch a few Christmas films and other films with them too. The loneliness was gone and I was just glad to spend time with the kiddos. I’m still not playing with them as much as I’d like, but that’s because I’m so busy always catching up with the adults that time just slips by. That’s my fault too. The need for solitude that I have means that I have to get in all my catching up when I do see my sister in person, so that kinda leaves the kiddos in a bind. I gotta do better with that. I will.
So, there it was. Christmas. The good and the bad. At least it ended on a good note. I’m relatively happy today, and I have a short week so there will be nothing to complain about. I’m looking forward to a visit I’m getting on Friday and to go through with my traditional New Year’s Eve festivities too, so no more reason to be blue. Let’s finish off 2018 on a high note, y’all!
Merry Christmas and may God bless each one of you!