And I have no Christmas decorations up. No Christmas tree. No flashing lights.
It’s not that I’m meaning to be a Scrooge this year. I sent out Christmas cards, bought Christmas gifts. I enjoyed being with my family, as the Hubby and I stayed with my folks from Sunday afternoon to Monday evening. Vigil Mass was a goofy affair, with a three-year old nephew and hokey-folksy liturgical music being distracting as all get-out. My brother had to work from 11pm to 7am (he’s one of three managers/head radiologists in the diagnostics department in a mid-city hospital), so present-opening happened late morning Christmas Day. TV watching, yup, but also seeing nephew try to play tennis on the Nintendo Wii, which was fun and goofy.
Ate my folks’ yummy yummy food — mostly Filipino fare this time. Always a good thing.
I even avoided land mines, like my mother telling me I was getting old and when she was getting her grandchildren from me. And me trying not to explode. I didn’t — I smiled, hugged her, and said I was going to see my doctor soon. Which was true.
Left in the early evening, just in time to see family friends and hang out with them and their teenage son until late evening. Once home, we dropped everything and headed for bed. Noticed that Janus Gate’s crashed over at our place again because her apartment’s heater *still* isn’t fixed yet.
Tuesday was post-Christmas gift stuff — putting stuff away, unpacking stuff. Checked the cats next door. Errand running. Then up-loading the syllabi on my website. I got the galley proof of my poetry and short story collection, made some revisions, got an ISBN, and updated my website to reflect that I have a book now. I ought to feel euphoric, grateful, happy even…
Perhaps because I have seen too many other people’s children in the past few days. Perhaps because I have found out that many of my long-distance friends that I’ve recently got in contact because of the Christmas season have become new parents this year. Perhaps because my mother’s question yesterday — which wasn’t the first instance and won’t be the last — hurt. More than I thought it would. Perhaps because two of my dear friends have lost their baby. And there’s no damn reason why.
Perhaps because there are many things I cannot do, I cannot be, and so I have been busying myself with things that I *can* do and be,. But in the greater scheme of things, what does any of this mean…
I’ve been finding it harder than usual to maintain the spirit of Christmas. I’m making damn sure to keep at it though — my comments to Joe Cynical wasn’t sophistry. I meant every word of it. I must keep the spirit of Christmas — I *must*. Too many people need me, and I need them. We must be there for each other — we *must*. Even when we’re enraged or depressed or, worse yet, can’t feel at all.
It is hard work. It is what it is. And somewhere, somehow, somewhen, joy will be there as well.
Like a fluke. Like a joke.
Like a miracle.
To believe that joy will be there, when one is in the soul’s dark void — to believe, when every thing in this world tells you it is folly to believe..
That is the true miracle.
That is the true meaning of Christmas.
And, as I said to Joe Cynical, no, it doesn’t get any easier.
But nothing worthwhile ever is. No shit.