My flight home is booked.
This year feels weird to me. I’m in a new place.
The last few years, I’ve not kept up with traditions. Last year, for much of the holiday season, I was separated physically from my soon to be ex-husband, and packing up boxes and such. Seemed senseless to do the decorating and baking and what not.
The year before that, I just didn’t feel like having Christmas. I was too sick and tired to entertain the usual crowd at our annual party and couldn’t see how putting up the tree would help me. I was the only one to see the decorations and I just couldn’t care.
Advertising and such would have you believe that Christmas is a time for peace and joy and faith and happiness, though the last few years I haven’t felt much of any of that.
2005 – when I had a cancelled cycle of fertility treatments just before Christmas and was forced to coast on fertility meds until they would work their way out of my system.
2006 – holding in the secret of my illness, and feeling unbearably stressed.
2007 – just felt hollow… and here we are in 2008.
Part of me wanted to spend the holiday where I am. Avoidance and all that. But, I know I should go home, and I think in the long run, I’ll be glad I went. (Besides, I hate to cross my mother who had issued the “you WILL be home for Christmas” statement in a frightening tone.) The tradition of breakfast with my immediate family on Christmas morning is one I’ve never broken, and there’s enough change this year to make me cling to this one usual thing.
I’ve tried after some prompting, to think of other things, other traditions I have kept up – but mostly they’re kind of silly to most. Without fail, I watch It’s a Wonderful Life, and not the TV version with too many commercials. And once each December, I load up on gas and hot chocolate and find the holiday radio station (each year it seems more and more do this) and drive around looking at the Christmas lights. Usually I snag people to go with me, because I’m obnoxious like that, but maybe this year I’ll go alone.
So, this year again I might not have a tree, and there will be no party, and my baking will be limited and the presents will be fewer.
But, I will be home for Christmas.
I’ve booked a ticket. I’m leaving Christmas eve.