The Christmas Before Last (Do Not Read This If You Want to Be Happy)

Tue Dec 24 2002 09:58AM -0800

Matanda ka na pala (Paraphrasing: Wow, you're old) -- my mom(!)

Knowing the way that my life has gone up to this point, I can almost guarantee that, two Christmases from now, I will be spending Christmas Eve in some remote corner of the United States in some godforsaken call room, getting called every 20 minutes because every patient in the house is pulling some kind of line from their body.

But that is not what I was going to talk about. Not directly, at least.

Six months is the longest I have ever spent away from home, four months is the longest I've gone without having a family member visit me, and, given my current state of mind, I pretty much quail at the thought of having to spend Christmas by myself, absolutely and utterly alone. It's been a struggle already spending Thanksgivings away from dear friends and family.

Let's compound this, shall we?

The other day it struck me how far apart on the Road of Life that me and my ex have gone. She has been in an extremely long term serious relationship on the verge of engagement, is almost essentially finished with school, and has already been offerred a handsomely paying job. She frequents places like Crate and Barrel, cooks roasts, has dinner parties, considers where she and her S.O. will eventually settle down, and has resigned herself to life as a Yuppie. The domesticity (OK maybe that's not a real word but screw it), anyway, the domesticity of it all is, frankly, stifling, at least in my mind. But that's my opinion (and you know what they say about opinions and assholes....) Who am I to gainsay someone's happiness? I could go on and on, but, let's contrast that to me. I have, for all intents and purposes, been alone for 7-8 years since we broke up, having never asked anyone out on a date, really. (Technically, I have, but there is no point in narrating all the various rejections and other failures of my attempts in the pursuit of the Fairer Sex.) I am still in the throes of school, with the light at the end of the tunnel only just now becoming visible, and even then there gapes the maw of a residency, and (horror of horrors!) possibly a fellowship at that. I stay out all night drinking until I forget where I am, find myself waking up in strange people's houses, have not eaten a home-cooked meal in, you guessed it, six months. So called liquid dinners and liquid breakfasts have become a mainstay of my diet. And I don't know where I'll be in another six months either, aren't even sure what part of the world I might be (especially if W decides to declare himself Emperor), and, as I've mentioned, would be content to die in some festering sewage-filled ditch without a penny to my name as long as I have a good time along the way. Die in a blaze of glory. Who wants to live forever. All that shit.

And yet.

I suppose that I will always be a hopeless Romantic. (Yes, in the sense that in the end, I will follow my heart and ignore logic. In the sense that I dwell on the dark, irrational side of Nature and Humanity. Not the hearts, flowers, and chocolates kind of shit.) Despite my avowed self-destructicism (Look at me! Making up words like I'm the President of the United States!), really, deep down inside, I am hoping that someone will rescue me. That I will meet someone who will make me want to Choose Life, who will make me want to stay where I am for more than a few fleeting moments, who will make me want to dream of a better world. In a phrase: someone who will give me hope.

But, you know, I never really ever believed in Santa Claus, have given up on wishing on stars, and have come to realize that some things were Never Meant to Be, and that there is no use trying to escape your destiny. And so if it is my lot to trudge through this dark, benighted world all alone until the reaper comes calling, then Thy Will Be Done.

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