It’s not that I don’t care about you right now, my friends. It’s that I don’t care about anything super much right now. Don’t take it personally. I’ve been called out on my malaise, but that doesn’t mean I’m going to amend my current pattern of behavior. I don’t exactly enjoy being a lump, but here I am. Lump.
When I’m moping, I am a fucking rock star support for certain people and the worst, most apathetic anti-support for others. How individuals get categorized is a total crapshoot. It’s not that I feel closer to certain people so feel they’re more deserving of my energy. It’s not. It’s not like I pick Santa-style, determining if you’ve been a good little boy or girl either. Nope. It’s entirely random and dependent on my mood at any given moment, which makes it genuinely unfair to anyone not getting my full attention. I acknowledge the disparity, but there ain’t squat I can do about that injustice. Talk to my inner nut job. The box for your comment cards is on the counter over there. Brooding is such an unattractive state, but we don’t get to pick when and how we brood any more than we get to pick disease profiles.
Instead of the season’s joy, the 2015 version of the family Christmas tree decking served up a side dish of sadness. I am annually a big ol’ soggy, sentimental fool when unboxing and sorting the Christmas ornaments, but this year was especially tearful. It reminded me of what seems like a long, long, long time ago when Christmas signaled only kindness and happy and peace, and everything felt festive. That was before. Before, back in the good ol’ days when the worst thing we were dealing with was my $10,000 pay cut (about which clearly I am still pissed off because holding a grudge with things I cannot control is a splinter skill of mine).
We are not religious, but do celebrate the gift-giving and merry-making the season ushers. Our chestnuts are roasting on an open fire. They’re not. Our tree is beautiful. Lighting is my husband’s splinter skill being an electrician and all, so restraint with tree lighting doesn’t exist. The ornaments on the tree are a trove of memories and experiences. Anytime we travel, we seek out the single ugliest, tackiest, destination-themed ornament we can find. I’m partial to the purple enamel on gold metal Niagara Falls ornament and the cheeseball, ultrabad Maine lobster that adorn our Frasier fir. Since their births, St. Nick has brought each son an ornament on the evening of December 5. We figured that when the kids would move on and start their own adult traditions, they wouldn’t have to start with a bare, Charlie Brown tree this way–all the baby’s firsts and moose and baseball and airplanes and Wisconsin Badgers and Green Bay Packers and the pop culture du jour ornaments (Scooby Doo, Thomas the Tank Engine, Perry the Platypus, et al) are only temporary residents of our collective family tree. The ones I get to keep are the ones I inherited from my grandmother, the ones my immeasurably talented friend Ann has created, and the ornaments the kids have made at school over the years. They’re exactly what you’d expect them to be–snowflakes with that year’s school photos, handmade gingerbread men, and clothespin characters of indeterminable lineage. So sweet. So innocent.
So not bursting at the seams with “Season’s Greetings!” on my lips this trip around the sun. (Holy shit you guys, if I hadn’t proofed this just now I would have used “seems” instead of “seams” and probably would have had to go sit in the penalty box and feel shame. See? Not my best-ever day here.) This helps, can’t deny a smirk when I pulled out this gem–
I’ll get there. I always do. I’m exceptionally gifted at the “fake it til you make it.” That’s just it–that’s why people don’t take me seriously or believe I’m actually down–talk to me tomorrow and you’ll have almost no idea that I’m sad on the inside. Maybe I use a few more curse words than usual (so that would mean a LOT of them and it might be hard to tell), but I’ll wander through looking almost completely normal in my deeds and words. So my friends, I know you have your own parcels of crap, some of you these days do, and it’s not that I don’t care. I do. I just don’t care in the ways you want and need me to right now. Trust me on this though: if I can do it, you can do it. For now, I’ll quietly be over there in the corner. Next to the box of comment cards suggesting I get over it and that I’m lucky for (insert whatever awesome thing you think I have). I know.