Sunday, December 31, 2006

You don't need to go home, but you can't stay here...

It's time to put a big old period at the end of 2006. Instead of resolutions, I choose devolutions (with a nod to my love of all things 80's), a sharing of what was, lessons learned and what I know to be true.
  • Although the high road requires greater exertion and may cause muscle soreness, the path is always one of greater reward.
  • My nephew-in-law, serving his first tour in Iraq, saves me from the insignificant, daily drama to focus instead on dedication, sacrifice and just shutting up and getting things done.
  • George W. mistakes failure to compromise with patriotism. Because of that, he is a scary, scary leader.
  • At my birthday table this year sat a dozen beautiful, wise, healthy, funny, gregarious women, friends who took a moment to raise a glass and make me queen for the day (I still have the tiara).
  • Forgiveness, coming in a moment of daring or with one simple gesture, will put an end to the wrinkles, the worry and the heavy load.
  • Family is both the one you're born to and the one you create.
  • Family will take advantage, push your buttons and hurt your feelings.
  • Family is all that really matters.
  • The care of your body is the absolutely most loving thing you can do.
  • Listen instead of waiting to talk.

Sunday, December 24, 2006

I’ll be home (alone) for Christmas

Why is it so hard to be single at Christmas? I mean really, single, not just the not-married single, but the no current boyfriend, no prospects single. And an older single at that, whose majority of friends are married with kids, not the single with the fabulous “gal pals”.

I fully and lovingly embrace the single life. There’s no need to check in or budget for two (or three or four) or get the wet towel. There’s always the thrill of the flirt without guilt and the chance meeting. And I love Christmas. I seek out just the right gifts and wrap them using way too much tape. I put up a tree. I spend time with family and friends who I adore. But at this most wonderful time of the year, it’s the really single in search of the tradition. I do the “drop in”, coming by to share gifts and a cocktail. I tag along. We singles ask, “So what are you doing for Christmas?” The couples and the committed have a ready-built holiday social calendar.

I imagine some envy my holly-jolly freedom. There are no crazy schedules, school pageants and panic that you forgot the batteries. No time spent with the boyfriends’ grandma who thinks you’re not “right for the boy”. But there’s a trade-off. My Christmas Eve is spent with take-out, pinot noir and a Nick@nite Rosanne marathon. I don’t wake up Christmas morning, stay in pajamas to open presents and spend a lazy day among torn wrapping paper and the smell of new boxes. There’s no one making the coffee. There’s no gift from that one special someone to bring tears, to tell you there's no one on earth like you, that you are loved beyond measure and biological ties. The really single may romanticize the reality out of it, but I have the feeling some of it is closer to real than not.

We can hardly stand to wait. Please January, don’t be late.

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